DReLAB - Deep REinforcement Learning Adversarial Botnet: A benchmark dataset for adversarial attacks against botnet Intrusion Detection Systems

Venturi, A., Apruzzese, G., Andreolini, M., Colajanni, M., & Marchetti, M., Data in Brief, 2021 Journal
Oneliner: Dataset, code snippet and tutorial for [TNSM20].

Abstract. We present the first dataset that aims to serve as a benchmark to validate the resilience of botnet detectors against adversarial attacks. This dataset includes realistic adversarial samples that are generated by leveraging two widely used Deep Reinforcement Learning (DRL) techniques. These adversarial samples are proved to evade state of the art detectors based on Machine- and Deep-Learning algorithms. The initial corpus of malicious samples consists of network flows belonging to different botnet families presented in three public datasets containing real enterprise network traffic. We use these datasets to devise detectors capable of achieving state-of-the-art performance. We then train two DRL agents, based on Double Deep Q-Network and Deep Sarsa, to generate realistic adversarial samples: the goal is achieving misclassifications by performing small modifications to the initial malicious samples. These alterations involve the features that can be more realistically altered by an expert attacker, and do not compromise the underlying malicious logic of the original samples. Our dataset represents an important contribution to the cybersecurity research community as it is the first including thousands of automatically generated adversarial samples that are able to thwart state of the art classifiers with a high evasion rate. The adversarial samples are grouped by malware variant and provided in a CSV file format. Researchers can validate their defensive proposals by testing their detectors against the adversarial samples of the proposed dataset. Moreover, the analysis of these samples can pave the way to a deeper comprehension of adversarial attacks and to some sort of explainability of machine learning defensive algorithms. They can also support the definition of novel effective defensive techniques.

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