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NIST CSWP 12 (Initial Public Draft)

Methodology for Characterizing Network Behavior of Internet of Things Devices

Date Published: April 1, 2020
Comments Due: May 1, 2020 (public comment period is CLOSED)
Email Questions to:


Paul Watrobski (MITRE), Joshua Klosterman (MITRE), William Barker (Dakota Consulting), Murugiah Souppaya (NIST)


This draft white paper from the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) demonstrates how to use device characterization techniques to describe the communication requirements of Internet of Things (IoT) devices in support of the manufacturer usage description (MUD) project. 

Securing a network is a complex task made all the more challenging when IoT devices are connected to it. This white paper delves into capturing network communications from IoT devices for analysis and generation of MUD files. Manufacturers and network administrators can use the proposed characterization techniques to describe the communication requirements of an IoT device, which can allow for the accurate management of network access to and from those devices. This can help to ensure that IoT devices perform as intended by the device manufacturers or owners.   

Companion Tool: NCCoE created a tool called MUD-PD for characterizing IoT devices, which is helpful in generating MUD files.



device characterization; Internet of Things; IoT; Manufacturer Usage Description; MUD; MUD-PD
Control Families

Identification and Authentication; System and Communications Protection


Download URL

Supplemental Material:
Local Download (pdf)
Project homepage

Document History:
04/01/20: CSWP 12 (Draft)
01/11/22: IR 8349 (Draft)
12/05/22: IR 8349 (Final)