The BGP Visibility Toolkit: Detecting Anomalous Internet Routing Behavior

In this paper, we propose the BGP Visibility Toolkit, a system for detecting and analyzing anomalous behavior in the Internet. We show that interdomain prefix visibility can be used to single out cases of erroneous demeanors resulting from misconfiguration or bogus routing policies. The implementation of routing policies with BGP is a complicated process, involving fine-tuning operations and interactions with the policies of the other active ASes. Network operators might end up with faulty configurations or unintended routing policies that prevent the success of their strategies and impact their revenues. As part of the Visibility Toolkit, we propose the BGP Visibility Scanner, a tool which identifies limited visibility prefixes in the Internet. The tool enables operators to provide feedback on the expected visibility status of prefixes. We build a unique set of ground-truth prefixes qualified by their ASes as intended or unintended to have limited visibility. Using a machine learning algorithm, we train on this unique dataset an alarm system that separates with 95% accuracy the prefixes with unintended limited visibility. Hence, we find that visibility features are generally powerful to detect prefixes which are suffering from inadvertent effects of routing policies. Limited visibility could render a whole prefix globally unreachable. This points towards a serious problem, as limited reachability of a non-negligible set of prefixes undermines the global connectivity of the Internet. We thus verify the correlation between global visibility and global connectivity of prefixes.

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