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Article

Address Space Layout Randomization Next Generation

1
School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of the West of Scotland, High Street, Paisley PA1 2BE, UK
2
Department of Computing Engineering, Universitat Politècnica de València, Camino de Vera s/n, 46022 Valencia, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(14), 2928; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9142928
Received: 2 June 2019 / Revised: 7 July 2019 / Accepted: 15 July 2019 / Published: 22 July 2019
Systems that are built using low-power computationally-weak devices, which force developers to favor performance over security; which jointly with its high connectivity, continuous and autonomous operation makes those devices specially appealing to attackers. ASLR (Address Space Layout Randomization) is one of the most effective mitigation techniques against remote code execution attacks, but when it is implemented in a practical system its effectiveness is jeopardized by multiple constraints: the size of the virtual memory space, the potential fragmentation problems, compatibility limitations, etc. As a result, most ASLR implementations (specially in 32-bits) fail to provide the necessary protection. In this paper we propose a taxonomy of all ASLR elements, which categorizes the entropy in three dimensions: (1) how, (2) when and (3) what; and includes novel forms of entropy. Based on this taxonomy we have created, ASLRA, an advanced statistical analysis tool to assess the effectiveness of any ASLR implementation. Our analysis show that all ASLR implementations suffer from several weaknesses, 32-bit systems provide a poor ASLR, and OS X has a broken ASLR in both 32- and 64-bit systems. This is jeopardizing not only servers and end users devices as smartphones but also the whole IoT ecosystem. To overcome all these issues, we present ASLR-NG, a novel ASLR that provides the maximum possible absolute entropy and removes all correlation attacks making ASLR-NG the best solution for both 32- and 64-bit systems. We implemented ASLR-NG in the Linux kernel 4.15. The comparative evaluation shows that ASLR-NG overcomes PaX, Linux and OS X implementations, providing strong protection to prevent attackers from abusing weak ASLRs. View Full-Text
Keywords: security; internet of things address space layout randomisation; vulnerability analysis; protection techniques security; internet of things address space layout randomisation; vulnerability analysis; protection techniques
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MDPI and ACS Style

Marco-Gisbert, H.; Ripoll Ripoll, I. Address Space Layout Randomization Next Generation. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 2928. https://doi.org/10.3390/app9142928

AMA Style

Marco-Gisbert H, Ripoll Ripoll I. Address Space Layout Randomization Next Generation. Applied Sciences. 2019; 9(14):2928. https://doi.org/10.3390/app9142928

Chicago/Turabian Style

Marco-Gisbert, Hector; Ripoll Ripoll, Ismael. 2019. "Address Space Layout Randomization Next Generation" Appl. Sci. 9, no. 14: 2928. https://doi.org/10.3390/app9142928

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