rtp_security - Real-time Transport Protocol (RTP) security...

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Real-time Transport Protocol (RTP) security Ville Hallivuori Helsinki University of Technology vph@iki.fi Abstract This paper describes the Real-time Transport Protocol (RTP). The emphasis is on the security features like confidentiality, integrity and authentication. RTP security features are critically commented and alternative arrangements with their security implications are presented. RTP security is also discussed on multi protocol context where some of RTP’s security services are provided by IPsec, SIP, SAP and SDP protocols. 1 Introduction RTP, Real-time Transport Protocol, is an application level protocol that is intended for de- livery of delay sensitive content, such as audio and video, trough different networks. The purpose of RTP is to facilitate delivery, monitoring, reconstruction, mixing and synchro- nization of data streams. Although RTP does not provide quality of service on IP networks, its mixers can be used to facilitate multimedia delivery on a wide range of link types and speeds. RTP is designed to use both unicast and multicast transport protocols. Even though RTP is a relatively new protocol, it is widely used by applications like Re- al Network’s RealPlayer, Apple’s QuickTime and Microsoft’s NetMeeting. Some of the common applications of RTP are audio and video streaming media services and video con- ferences. As RTP is usually used trough Internet, the network should be considered as insecure. Al- though many media streams are publicly available, video conferencing use usually requires confidentiality. In many situations it would be preferable if the user could authenticate the originator and ensure the integrity of media streams. 2 RTP Protocol 2.1 Protocol architecture RTP is a modular protocol. The base protocol is defined by RFC 1889 [12]. The usage of RTP for a specific purpose requires that also an application area specific RTP profile must be implemented. RFC 1889 defines basic fields for the transportation of real time 1
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HUT TML 2000 Tik-110.501 Seminar on Network Security data. It also defines RTCP, RTP Control Protocol, whose purpose is to provide feedback on transmission quality, information about participants of RTP session, and enable minimal session control services. RTP profiles are used for refining the basic RTP protocol to suit for a particular application area. Commonly RTP profiles refine the meaning of the fields provided by the basic RTP protocol. RTP profiles also add new fields and rules. RTP profiles define how and by which formats data is encapsulated to RTP packets. In contrary to many protocols, RTP is usually implemented by each application, and not by an operating system or by a separate stack. These implementations may, and often are, based on generic RTP libraries. Existence of the application dependent profiles almost mandates that the RTP service must be implemented on an application basis. RTP protocol is transport independent and it can be used over various networking technologies. The
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rtp_security - Real-time Transport Protocol (RTP) security...

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