Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

David D. Bouvin, PhD


In 2003, Gartner, Inc., predicted the inevitable demise of the intrusion detection (ID) market, a major player in the computer security technology industry. In light of this prediction, IT executives need to know if intrusion detection technologies serve a strategic purpose within the framework of information assurance (IA). This research investigated the historical background and circumstances that led to the birth of the intrusion detection field and explored the evolution of the discipline through current research in order to identify appropriate roles for IDS technology within an information assurance framework. The research identified factors contributing to the birth of ID including increased procurement and employment of resource-sharing computer systems in the DoD, a growing need to operate in an open computing environment while maintaining security and the unmanageable volume of audit data produced as a result of security requirements. The research also uncovered six trends that could be used to describe the evolution of the ID discipline encompassing passive to active response mechanisms, centralized to distributed management platforms, centralized to distributed/agent-based detection, single to multiple detection approaches within a system, host-based to network to hybrid analysis and software-based to hardware-based/in-line devices. Finally, the research outlined three roles suitable for IDS to fulfill within the IA framework including employing IDS as a stimulus to incident response mechanisms, as a forensic tool for gathering evidence of computer misuse and as a vulnerability assessment or policy enforcement facility.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number


Included in

Risk Analysis Commons