Dynamic ARP Inspection is a powerful security feature that helps protect attacks from sneaky attacks that exploit fake identification packets. Dynamic ARP inspection works by verifying that all ARP traffic on a network is valid. It drops invalid ARP packets, which helps protect your network from attacks that use forged or spoofed source IP addresses. You can enable it on Cisco switches and routers with the help of an easy ARP inspection command.
Arp inspection can help protect your network from a wide variety of attacks that rely on forged or spoofed source IP addresses, including man-in-the-middle attacks, denial of service attacks, and session hijacking attacks. It can also help improve the security of your network by reducing the number of potential attack vectors that are available to malicious actors.
Dynamic ARP inspection is a valuable security tool for any business or enterprise network. If you are not currently using dynamic ARP inspection, consider enabling it on your switches and routers. It can help protect your network from a wide range of attacks and improve the security of your infrastructure.
Table of Contents
- Why Dynamic ARP Inspection?
- Understanding Dynamic ARP Inspection
- How does DAI work?
- Benefits of Dynamic ARP inspection
- What are the Best practices for configuring DAI?
- ARP Validation Checks
- Rate Limiting Incoming ARP Packets
Why Dynamic ARP Inspection?
ARP spoofing attacks are on the rise, as hackers find new and innovative ways to exploit this vulnerability. A dynamic ARP inspection can help mitigate the effects of these attacks by verifying that all ARP traffic is valid. By dropping invalid packets, a dynamic ARP inspection can help reduce network congestion and improve overall network performance.
If you are looking for a way to improve the security of your business or enterprise network, dynamic ARP inspection is a feature worth considering. With its ability to mitigate such attacks and improve network performance, a dynamic ARP inspection can help keep your network running smoothly. For more information on dynamic ARP inspection and how it can benefit your network please read through this article.
Understanding Dynamic ARP Inspection
DAI is a security feature that can help mitigate attacks that use suspicious ARP packets. An example of ARP Spoofing Attack is showing here in the diagram.
Here PC (attacker, 10.10.10.30) can poison the ARP cache of the switch and PC (10.10.10.10) for Laptop (10.10.10.20) by broadcasting forged ARP responses. The ARP packets from PC (attacker, 10.10.10.30) claim that the IP address 10.10.10.20 exists on Mac Address: E6-E6-E6-E6-E6-E6. So, both PC (10.10.10.10) and switch use the MAC address “E6-E6-E6-E6-E6-E6” as the destination MAC address for traffic meant for Laptop (10.10.10.20).
By verifying that all ARP traffic on a network is valid, we can drop the invalid ARP packets. This helps to protect your network from attacks that use suspicious or spoofed source IP addresses. DAI allows network administrators to intercept, log, and filter ARP packets with invalid MAC address to IP address bindings. It associates a trust state with every port on the switch. It permits ARP traffic only from the ports marked as trusted.
How does DAI work?
DAI operates at Layer 2 of the OSI model, which means that it operates at the data link layer of the network. DAI can be implemented on a per-VLAN basis or globally on a network. In a per-VLAN implementation, DAI is applied to a specific VLAN on a switch, while in a global implementation, DAI is applied to all VLANs on a switch.
Before implementing this technique in your CISCO switches and routers, you need to understand some of the key technical terms attached with this solution.
Internet Protocol version 4 is the most common version of the IP protocol, used to route data packets across the internet. IPv4 uses a 32-bit addressing scheme, which allows for a maximum of 232 OR 4,294,967,296 unique addresses across the globe.
Internet Protocol version 6 is the successor to IPv4, IPv6 uses 128-bit addresses, which allows for a maximum of 3.4×1038 unique addresses. IPv6 is not yet as widely adopted as IPv4, but it is gradually gaining traction as the world moves towards a more IP-based economy.
Media Access Control (MAC) address is a unique identifier for a device’s network interface card. The MAC address is used by Ethernet and other networking technologies to identify devices on a network.
Spoofing attack is a type of attack in which an attacker sends messages to a network with a false source IP address, in an attempt to mislead recipients or disguise the origin of the message.
ARP Cache Poisoning:
An attacker can attack hosts, switches, and routers connected to your Layer 2 network by “poisoning” their ARP caches. Attackers might intercept traffic intended for other hosts on the subnet by poisoning the ARP caches of systems connected to the subnet.
Address Resolution Protocol (ARP):
Address Resolution Protocol is a networking protocol used to translate IPv4 addresses into MAC addresses. ARP is used when devices on a network need to communicate with each other.
Benefits of Dynamic ARP inspection
There are a number of benefits to using dynamic ARP inspection in a business or enterprise network. Some of the key benefits include:
- Increased Security – By ensuring that all ARP traffic is valid, a dynamic arp inspection can help protect your network from different attacks.
- Improved Network Performance – Dropping invalid ARP packets can help reduce network congestion and improve overall network performance.
- Enhanced Troubleshooting Capability – Dynamic arp inspection can help you identify and troubleshoot problems with ARP communications on your network.
- Prevention from Spoof Attacks – Protection from attacks that use forged or spoofed source IP addresses
- Easy to Implement – This protection is very easy to enable on Cisco switches and routers
What are the Best practices for configuring DAI?
Here are some best practices for configuring Dynamic ARP Inspection (DAI) in a network:
- Enable DHCP snooping: DHCP snooping is a related security feature that verifies the validity of DHCP messages by checking the information in the messages against a binding table. Enabling DHCP snooping provides a more complete security solution and helps to prevent DHCP attacks.
- Configure trusted and untrusted ports: DAI operates by inspecting and verifying the validity of ARP messages that are sent over the network. To do this, DAI must be able to distinguish between trusted and untrusted ports on a switch. Configure trusted ports for devices that are known to be legitimate, such as servers and routers, and configure untrusted ports for all other devices.
- Use IP source guard: IP source guard is a feature that verifies the validity of IP addresses by checking the information in the packet against the DHCP snooping binding table. IP source guard can help to prevent IP address spoofing attacks and is a recommended complement to DAI.
- Implement strict mode: Strict mode is a configuration option that drops all ARP packets that do not have a matching entry in the ARP table. This option can provide an additional layer of security against ARP attacks and is recommended for networks that require the highest levels of security.
- Monitor DAI logs: DAI generates logs that can be used to monitor network activity and troubleshoot issues. Regularly reviewing these logs can help network administrators to identify and respond to security threats and other network issues.
By following these best practices, network administrators can configure DAI to provide an effective and robust security solution for their enterprise networks.
ARP Validation Checks
Multiple checks can be implemented to validate the incoming ARP Packets. These include
- Validating the destination MAC address in the ARP Packets
- Validating the IP address of the sender in ARP Packets
- Validating the target host IP address in ARP Response Packets
- Validating the MAC Address of the Source
This can be accomplished by using the “ip arp inspection validate” command with MAC and IP Addresses of the Source and Destination.
Rate Limiting Incoming ARP Packets
ARP packets can be rate-limited to help protect the network from large volumes of spoofed ARP traffic. This can be done using the ARP rate-limit command on Cisco switches and routers. When enabled, this command will limit the number of ARP packets that can be received per second. This can help protect the network from attacks that use large volumes of spoofed ARP traffic.
The rate limiting can be accomplished by using the “ip arp inspection limit” command. This command is used to limit the rate of both incoming ARP packets and response packets.
In recent years, businesses and organizations have seen a significant increase in the number of cyber security attacks. While there are many different types of attacks, one of the most common is ARP spoofing. It is a type of attack that uses forged or falsified ARP packets to steal data or gain access to a network.
Thankfully, there are several ways to help protect your network from ARP attacks. One of the most effective methods is dynamic ARP inspection. It is a security feature that helps mitigate attacks that use suspicious ARP packets. DAI works by verifying that all ARP traffic on a network is valid. Invalid ARP packets are dropped, which helps protect your network from attacks that use forged or spoofed source IP addresses.
Here are our guides on using VPN for secure communication and tips on data security and keeping your Business data protected.