Computer Security Resource Center

Computer Security Resource Center

Computer Security
Resource Center

This is an archive
(replace .gov by .rip)

White Paper (DRAFT)

[Project Description] Mitigating IoT-based Automated Distributed Threats

Date Published: October 2017
Comments Due: October 25, 2017 (public comment period is CLOSED)
Email Questions to:

Withdrawn: December 14, 2017


W. Polk (NIST), Murugiah Souppaya (NIST), William Barker (Dakota Consulting)


The objective of this project is to reduce the vulnerability of Internet of Things (IoT) devices to botnets and other automated distributed threats, while limiting the utility of compromised IoT devices to malicious actors.  The scenarios envisioned for this NCCoE project emphasize home and small-business applications, where plug-and-play deployment is required. In one scenario, a home network includes IoT devices that interact with external systems to access secure updates and various cloud services, in addition to interacting with traditional personal computing devices. In a second scenario, a small retail business employs IoT devices for security, building management, and retail sales, as well as computing devices for business operations, while simultaneously allowing customers to access the internet.

The primary technical elements of this project include:

  • network gateways/routers supporting wired and wireless network access;
  • Manufacturer Usage Description (MUD) Specification controllers and file servers;
  • Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) and update servers;
  • threat signaling servers;
  • personal computing devices; and
  • business computing devices.

While the security capabilities of these components will not provide perfect security, they will significantly increase the effort required by malicious actors to compromise and exploit IoT devices on a home or small-business network. This project will result in a freely available NIST Cybersecurity Practice Guide.



botnets; internet of things (IoT); manufacturer usage description (MUD); router; server; software update server; threat signaling
Control Families

None selected


Draft Project Description

Supplemental Material:
Submit Comments (other)
Project Homepage (other)

Document History:
Draft White Paper (10/12/17)
White Paper (12/14/17)


Security and Privacy

Internet of Things; small & medium business