Intrusion detection terminology (part one)

Thursday, 4 September 2003, 5:54 PM EST

Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) are still in their infancy, but in terms of development they are evolving at an extraordinary rate. The terminology associated with IDS is evolving just as rapidly. As a result of IDS' rapid growth and the marketing prowess of some IDS vendors, some confusion has arisen about the correct meaning of key terms.

In some cases the same term may be used by different vendors to mean different things. This is the first of a two-part series that discusses IDS terminology, including terms where there may be disagreement from within the security community. Wherever possible, I have tried to include all definitions except where I consider usage of the term to be inaccurate or misleading.

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