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Predictive Network Anomaly Detection and Visualization

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4 Author(s)
Celenk, M. ; Sch. of Electr. Eng. & Comput. Sci., Ohio Univ., Athens, OH, USA ; Conley, T. ; Willis, J. ; Graham, J.

Various approaches have been developed for quantifying and displaying network traffic information for determining network status and in detecting anomalies. Although many of these methods are effective, they rely on the collection of long-term network statistics. Here, we present an approach that uses short-term observations of network features and their respective time averaged entropies. Acute changes are localized in network feature space using adaptive Wiener filtering and auto-regressive moving average modeling. The color-enhanced datagram is designed to allow a network engineer to quickly capture and visually comprehend at a glance the statistical characteristics of a network anomaly. First, average entropy for each feature is calculated for every second of observation. Then, the resultant short-term measurement is subjected to first- and second-order time averaging statistics. These measurements are the basis of a novel approach to anomaly estimation based on the well-known Fisher linear discriminant (FLD). Average port, high port, server ports, and peered ports are some of the network features used for stochastic clustering and filtering. We empirically determine that these network features obey Gaussian-like distributions. The proposed algorithm is tested on real-time network traffic data from Ohio University's main Internet connection. Experimentation has shown that the presented FLD-based scheme is accurate in identifying anomalies in network feature space, in localizing anomalies in network traffic flow, and in helping network engineers to prevent potential hazards. Furthermore, its performance is highly effective in providing a colorized visualization chart to network analysts in the presence of bursty network traffic.

Published in:

Information Forensics and Security, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:5 ,  Issue: 2 )

Date of Publication:

June 2010

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