Current State of IPv6 Security in IoT

05/05/2021
by   Lisandro Ubiedo, et al.
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This report presents the current state of security in IPv6 for IoT devices. In this research conducted from May 2020 to July 2020, we explored the global growth of IPv6 and compared it with the real growth of IPv6 in a medium size network. If IPv6 is already being used, are attackers already attacking using this protocol? To answer this question we look at the current vulnerabilities, attacks, and malware leveraging IPv6. Our research showed that while IPv6 adoption is growing, we are years away of a full adoption. The current global adoption is of 35%, however there are countries rapidly adopting IPv6, such as India with 60% of IPv6 enabled in the country. IPv6 brings new challenges for both attackers and defenders. With a larger address space, the activity of device discovery will force attackers to devise new techniques and tools. Defenders will also have to adapt their tools and monitoring technology to be able to work with IPv6. There are currently more than 16 million devices exposed on the internet on IPv6, however malware authors seem to be still focused mainly on IPv4. There is to date, one malware capable of attacking IPv6 networks. This may give an edge to defenders, who have now the opportunity to give the first step ahead of attackers.

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