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Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis > data : passive : telescope-darknet-scanners_dataset.xml
UCSD Network Telescope -- Darknet Scanners Dataset

The UCSD network telescope consists of a globally routed /8 network that monitors large segments of lightly utilized address space with permission of its holders. Because there is little legitimate traffic in this address space, the network telescope provides a monitoring point for anomalous traffic that represents almost 1/256th of all IPv4 destination addresses on the Internet.

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The CAIDA UCSD Network Telescope Darknet Scanners Dataset

The UCSD network telescope consists of a globally routed /8 network that carries almost no legitimate traffic. We can filter out the legitimate traffic so the resulting data provides us with a snapshot of anomalous 'background' traffic to 1/256th of all public IPv4 destination addresses on the Internet.

The packets seen by the network telescope result from a wide range of events, including misconfiguration (e.g. mistyping an IP address), scanning of address space by attackers or malware looking for vulnerable targets, backscatter from randomly spoofed source denial-of-service attacks, and the automated spread of malware.

This dataset contains IP addresses that conduct horizontal scans of UCSD's network telescope. We use Bro's default parameters (the same source IP address is used to contact 25 unique destination IP addresses on the same destination port/protocol) within 5 minutes.

We include the following information:

  • IP addresses
  • Scanned port
  • Scanned protocol
  • Timestamp scan began
  • Scanning statistics that may be used as heuristics for determining scanning strategy.
All timestamps are in UTC.

This dataset is a derivative of the UCSD Network Telescope realtime flow tuple dataset (see

We run a custom corsaro plugin on each day of flow tuple data, recording any IP address that sends packets on the same protocol/destination port to at least 25 darknet IP addresses a span of 5 minutes.

For each entry in our daily list of scanners (source IP, destination port, protocol) we collect hourly statistics, including hours of the day where the scanner did not meet the 25 IPs in 5 minutes criteria. We generate hourly statistics using a second corsaro plugin.

Referencing this Dataset

When referencing this data, please use:

The CAIDA UCSD Network Telescope "Darknet Scanners" Dataset - < dates used >,
Also, please, report your publication to CAIDA.

Data Access

Since April 2016 access to these data is provided through the website of the Information Marketplace for Policy and Analysis of Cyber-risk and Trust (IMPACT).

  • Access to these data can be requested through IMPACT

UCSD Network Telescope Datasets


For more information on the UCSD Network Telescope, see:

For more information on the CoralReef Software Suite, see:

For more information on the Corsaro Software Suite, see:

For a non-exhaustive list of Non-CAIDA publications using Network Telescope data, see:

  Last Modified: Wed Feb-7-2018 16:16:54 PST
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