Author: Ihekweaba Ogechikanma Linda
Department: Electronic and Computer Engineering
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

This study focused on the emerging paradigm of network security, which is based on the use of the intelligent agent as an adaptive mechanism for network threat defense. Since network attacks vary considerably in their complexity and threat level, the dissertation focused on investigating the deployment of intelligent agents based security systems, to protect the network Dynamic Host Configuration Service (DHCS) from a Denial of Service (DoS) attack. The intensive work already done by others on intrusion detection was reviewed to show that a lot is still left to be done with respect to Denial of Services attacks. The dissertation as a proof of concept developed a multi-agent software prototype which demonstrates the feasibility and effectiveness of deploying intelligent agents to protect an enterprise network from Denial of Service attacks. The concepts and analysis framework on which the system design presented is based are clearly defined. Agent Oriented Software Engineering concepts are used to depict the behavioral specifications of the security system. A test network environment consisting of four computers connected with Ethernet switch was setup. The system implementation entails deploying the network security software on one of the computers running the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server service to protect the DHCP server from Denial of Service attack. In carrying out the DoS attack penetration test, a DoS attack tool was deployed from one of the work stations in the network. By initiating the attack from the work station while the agent security system was running, the DHCP address pool was protected. Also the attack work stations’ session was killed on the server. This clearly indicates that there was a trace back by the agent software.

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