A Prakash and MP Wellman
Second ACM Workshop on Moving Target Defense, Oct 2015.
The effectiveness of a moving target defense depends on how it is deployed through specific system operations over time, and how attackers may respond to this deployment. We define a generic cyber-defense scenario, and examine the interplay between attack and defense strategies using empirical game-theoretic techniques. In this approach, the scenario is defined procedurally by a simulator, and data derived from systematic simulation is used to induce a game model. We explore a space of 72 game instances, defined by differences in agent objectives, attack cost, and ability of the defender to detect attack actions. We observe a range of qualitative strategic behaviors, which vary in clear patterns across environmental conditions. In particular, we find that the efficacy of deterrent defense is critically sensitive to detection capability, and in the absence of perfect detection the defender is often driven to proactive moving-target actions.