In reference to recent concerns over issues with ping sweeps and port scans. There are several diagnostic test called network probes that are run by Network Administrators to check servers regarding a particular service or updates needed for workstations within the company. In order to guard against nefarious computer activity, special security measures are needed to keep out intruders. Here is a brief assessment in more detail of how ping sweeps and port scans work.
A ping sweep or (ICMP sweep) Internet Control Message Protocol is a basic network scanning technique used to determine which range of IP Addresses are mapped to live host computers. As cracking tools become more popular and increase in number, this trend is likely to continue. Network probes are technically not ...view middle of the document...
In ping sweeps a large range of IP Addresses send a set of ICMP Echo packets to a computer system to find out which ones will react to the ping. Ping sweeps are used legitimately by the Network Administrator to find out which machines are alive for diagnostic reasons and detect any vulneralability in the companies computer system. (Theo, 2000)
Tools used for conducting ping sweeps are fping that sends one packet to one IP Address then proceeds to the next address, showing the IP Address ranges alive on the network. This is important information to the Network Administrator because it tracks activity on unreachable computers as well. (Theo, 2000)
An Administrator can disable ping sweeps on a network by blocking ICMP Timestamp and Address Mask Request can be used in a similar manner. (M. Rouse, 2005)
A port scan is a method used by intruders to discover the services running on a targeted machine, and plan an attack on any vulnerable service on that computer. If a specific port is open they may find out what version of IMAP is running and be able to gain superuser access to the computer using an “exploit” program. (Theo, 2000)
Security checks and balances are an important process of testing and detecting vulnerabilities in the network system. In order to close security holes for open ports and IP Addresses using network probes will help prevent intrusive activity on servers and the workplace computers. Security maintenance is a top priority of a Network Administrator and ping sweeps and port scans ensures protection for our network.
Linux Journal, Retrieved July 13,2013, from http://www.linuxjournal.com/article/4234, By Lawrence Teo in Security, Dec.01,2000.