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For many years now, rumours about different kinds of network lag-attacks have circulated for a while and died only to be revived in a year or so.

This document will attempt to explain some concepts of internetworking and Internet security.

                           IP (Internet Protocol)
  The Internet Protocol (IP) is the method or protocol by which data is sent
from one computer to another on the Internet. Each host (computer, router etc)
on the Internet has at least one IP address that uniquely identifies it from
all other computers on the Internet. When you send or receive data (for
example, receiving a long room description in MUME), the message gets divided
into little chunks called packets. Each of these packets contains both the 
sender's Internet address and the receiver's address. Any packet is sent first
to a gateway computer that understands a small part of the Internet.
  The gateway computer reads the destination address and forwards the packet
to an adjacent gateway that in turn reads the destination address and so forth
across the Internet until one gateway recognizes the packet as belonging to a
computer within its immediate neighbourhood or domain. That gateway then
forwards the packet directly to the computer whose address is specified. 
                      DoS (Denial of Service) Attacks
  On the Internet, a denial of service (DoS) attack is an incident in
which a user or organization is deprived of the services of a resource they
would normally expect to have. Typically, the loss of service is the inability
of a particular network service, such as MUME, to be available or the temporary
loss of all network connectivity and services. Common types of DoS attacks
are buffer overflow attacks and SYN-floods.
  To be able to execute a DoS attack, you will need at least the
IP-address of the target. Most likely a presumtive attacker would also want
to know what OS the target is running, and - if possible - what kind of network
the target is locally connected to.
                           MUME and DoS Attacks
  Since MUME doesn't offer the players any way of knowing what IP-address any
given player has, the possibility of DoS Attacks to gain advantage of an enemy
etc is very limited. A presumtive attacker would need to take control of a host
with a network device very close to MUME, and listen in on all network traffic.
Then the attacker would need to filter out information about his/her enemy,
and use some kind of attack-program to disable the target. Of course, this
is in theory all very possible, but also VERY unlikely to happen.
  If someone were to gain control of above mentioned host in the 
vicinity of MUME, he or she could do a lot worse damage than executing DoS
Attacks on PK enemies.
                                PK and Lag
  When going from a non-PK situation to a PK-situation, generally the textual
output from MUME increases a lot. This means that even a low packet loss
link gets a more notable latency (lag) when loaded with more packets. This
lag is generally because of the resending (packet loss recovery) offered
by TCP (Transmission Control Protocol), which is the transport layer above
IP that MUME uses for player connections.
  It might also be worth noting that having a 0% packet loss link when using
a ping-program (a program that uses the ICMP echo-request and echo-reply
messages), does not guarantee you will have 0% packet loss over a TCP session
(such as a connection to MUME).

Generated on Mon Aug 31 21:53:22 2020