Blinkie Lights: Network Monitoring with Arduino

Presented at DEF CON 19 (2011), Aug. 7, 2011, 1 p.m. (50 minutes)

Remember the good old days, when you'd stare at Rx and Tx on your shiny new Supra 1200bps modem, and actually know what the heck was going on? Systems tend to talk a lot more nowadays, and somewhere along the line I completely lost track of who mine hangs out with. And I kind of miss my blinkie lights. But we live in a world of Arduino and cheap LEDs - maybe there's a way to play with electronics, talk about security, and show the kids a thing or two - all at the same time. Imagine if one of those USB toys on your desk could actually give you an indication of which countries you were trading packets with, or alert you to unusually long-running sessions. 'cerealbox' will demonstrate how an 8x8 multicolor LED matrix, Arduino, and a network monitoring program can be used to make an LED-based sniffer for around $60. And if that doesn't sound interesting, just wait until you see Port Scan Inferno.


  • Steve Ocepek - Director of Security Research, Trustwave SpiderLabs
    Steve Ocepek was one of the original team behind Wholepoint, a computer security consultancy that later merged with Trustwave. As Director of Security Research for Spiderlabs, he is in charge of all signature development for all products, maintaining and updating open source projects, researching new threats, providing intelligence to premier clients, pursuing security advisories, and supporting other SpiderLabs teams during technical engagements. Ocepek's accomplishments include discovering and patenting a new method of detecting wireless clients from the wired network, as well as creating the "thicknet" framework to analyze protocols for Man-in-the-Middle attack surface. He has a featured as a keynote speaker at industry conferences such as Blackhat in both the USA and Europe, and OWASP AppSec. Ocepek is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and a member of Northeast Ohio Information Security Forum. Twitter: @nosteve


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