Tracing attacks and restoring integrity with LASCAR
We present a novel method to trace the propagation of intrusions or malicious code in networked systems. Our solution is aimed at large numbers of loosely managed workstations typical of a research environment as found in CERN. The system tags events which have a potential to become harmful. On a given machine all processes that results from the tagged event are marked with the same tag and the tag is carried on to others machines if a tagged process establishes a connection. Tag creation logs are stored in a central database. When an intrusion is detected at a later time, all machines and processes that may have lost their integrity due to this incident can easily be found. This leads to a quick and effective restoration of the system. Our implementation of the system is designed to incur very little overhead on the machines and integrates easily with many flavors of the Linux operating system on any type of hardware.