Date of Award

Spring 3-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Cyber Operations (PhDCO)


Computer Science

First Advisor

Michael Ham

Second Advisor

Yong Wang

Third Advisor

Katie Anderson

Fourth Advisor

Dallas Wright

Fifth Advisor

Sunny Wear


This study addresses a vulnerability in the trust-based STP protocol that allows malicious users to target an Ethernet LAN with an STP Root-Takeover Attack. This subject is relevant because an STP Root-Takeover attack is a gateway to unauthorized control over the entire network stack of a personal or enterprise network. This study aims to address this problem with a potentially trustless research solution called the STP DApp. The STP DApp is the combination of a kernel /net modification called stpverify and a Hyperledger Fabric blockchain framework in a NodeJS runtime environment in userland. The STP DApp works as an Intrusion Detection System (IPS) by intercepting Ethernet traffic and blocking forged Ethernet frames sent by STP Root-Takeover attackers. This study’s research methodology is a quantitative pre-experimental design that provides conclusive results through empirical data and analysis using experimental control groups. In this study, data collection was based on active RAM utilization and CPU Usage during a performance evaluation of the STP DApp. It blocks an STP Root-Takeover Attack launched by the Yersinia attack tool installed on a virtual machine with the Kali operating system. The research solution is a test blockchain framework using Hyperledger Fabric. It is made up of an experimental test network made up of nodes on a host virtual machine and is used to validate Ethernet frames extracted from stpverify.