Source: Research in Attacks, Intrusion and Defense (2016)
We present CloudRadar, a system to detect, and hence mitigate, cache-based side-channel attacks in multi-tenant cloud systems. CloudRadar operates by correlating two events: first, it exploits signature- based detection to identify when the protected virtual machine (VM) executes a cryptographic application; at the same time, it uses anomaly-based detection techniques to monitor the co-located VMs to identify ab- normal cache behaviors that are typical during cache-based side-channel attacks. We show that correlation in the occurrence of these two events o↵er strong evidence of side-channel attacks. Compared to other work on side-channel defenses, CloudRadar has the following advantages: first, CloudRadar focuses on the root causes of cache-based side-channel at- tacks and hence is hard to evade using metamorphic attack code, while maintaining a low false positive rate. Second, CloudRadar is designed as a lightweight patch to existing cloud systems, which does not require new hardware support, or any hypervisor, operating system, application modifications. Third, CloudRadar provides real-time protection and can detect side-channel attacks within the order of milliseconds. We demonstrate a prototype implementation of CloudRadar in the OpenStack cloud framework. Our evaluation suggests CloudRadar achieves negligible performance overhead with high detection accuracy.