We define a simple process calculus, based on Hennessy and Regan's Timed Process Language, for specifying networks of communicating programmable logic controllers (PLCs) enriched with monitors enforcing specification compliance at runtime. We define a synthesis algorithm that given an uncorrupted PLC returns a monitor that enforces the correctness of the PLC, even when injected with malware that may forge/drop actuator commands and inter-controller communications. Then, we strengthen the capabilities of our monitors by allowing the insertion of actions to mitigate malware activities. This gives us deadlock-freedom monitoring: malware may not drag monitored controllers into deadlock states. Our enforcing monitors represent a formal mechanism for prompt detection of malicious activities within PLCs. Finally, we illustrate our results by implementing in Simulink a non-trivial Water Transmission Network (WTN) system, and testing the effectiveness of our monitors in detecting and mitigating three different attacks targeting the PLCs of our WTN.

A process calculus approach to detection and mitigation of PLC malware

Lanotte R.;
2021

Abstract

We define a simple process calculus, based on Hennessy and Regan's Timed Process Language, for specifying networks of communicating programmable logic controllers (PLCs) enriched with monitors enforcing specification compliance at runtime. We define a synthesis algorithm that given an uncorrupted PLC returns a monitor that enforces the correctness of the PLC, even when injected with malware that may forge/drop actuator commands and inter-controller communications. Then, we strengthen the capabilities of our monitors by allowing the insertion of actions to mitigate malware activities. This gives us deadlock-freedom monitoring: malware may not drag monitored controllers into deadlock states. Our enforcing monitors represent a formal mechanism for prompt detection of malicious activities within PLCs. Finally, we illustrate our results by implementing in Simulink a non-trivial Water Transmission Network (WTN) system, and testing the effectiveness of our monitors in detecting and mitigating three different attacks targeting the PLCs of our WTN.
Malware detection; Mitigation; Process calculus; Programmable logic controller; Runtime enforcement
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11383/2115400
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