Game Theoretic Resistance to Denial of Service Attacks Using Hidden Difficulty Puzzles

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Executive Summary

Denial of Service (DoS) vulnerabilities are one of the major concerns in today's Internet. Client-puzzles offer a good mechanism to defend servers against DoS attacks. This paper introduces the notion of hidden puzzle difficulty, where the attacker cannot determine the difficulty of the puzzle without expending a minimal amount of computational resource. Game theory is used to develop defense mechanisms, which make use of such puzzles. New puzzles that satisfy the requirements of the defense mechanisms have been proposed. The paper also shows that the defense mechanisms are more effective than the ones proposed in the earlier work by Fallah.

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