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A comprehensive guide to CAN IDS data and introduction of the ROAD dataset

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Although ubiquitous in modern vehicles, Controller Area Networks (CANs) lack basic security properties and are easily exploitable. A rapidly growing field of CAN security research has emerged that seeks to detect intrusions or anomalies on CANs. Producing vehicular CAN data with a variety of intrusions is a difficult task for most researchers as it requires expensive assets and deep expertise. To illuminate this task, we introduce the first comprehensive guide to the existing open CAN intrusion detection system (IDS) datasets. We categorize attacks on CANs including fabrication (adding frames, e.g., flooding or targeting and ID), suspension (removing an ID’s frames), and masquerade attacks (spoofed frames sent in lieu of suspended ones). We provide a quality analysis of each dataset; an enumeration of each datasets’ attacks, benefits, and drawbacks; categorization as real vs. simulated CAN data and real vs. simulated attacks; whether the data is raw CAN data or signal-translated; number of vehicles/CANs; quantity in terms of time; and finally a suggested use case of each dataset. State-of-the-art public CAN IDS datasets are limited to real fabrication (simple message injection) attacks and simulated attacks often in synthetic data, lacking fidelity. In general, the physical effects of attacks on the vehicle are not verified in the available datasets. Only one dataset provides signal-translated data but is missing a corresponding “raw” binary version. This issue pigeon-holes CAN IDS research into testing on limited and often inappropriate data (usually with attacks that are too easily detectable to truly test the method). The scarcity of appropriate data has stymied comparability and reproducibility of results for researchers. As our primary contribution, we present the Real ORNL Automotive Dynamometer (ROAD) CAN IDS dataset, consisting of over 3.5 hours of one vehicle’s CAN data. ROAD contains ambient data recorded during a diverse set of activities, and attacks of increasing stealth with multiple variants and instances of real (i.e. non-simulated) fuzzing, fabrication, unique advanced attacks, and simulated masquerade attacks. To facilitate a benchmark for CAN IDS methods that require signal-translated inputs, we also provide the signal time series format for many of the CAN captures. Our contributions aim to facilitate appropriate benchmarking and needed comparability in the CAN IDS research field.