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Internet protocols are publicly posted for scrutiny by the entire Internet community. Each accepted protocol is known by its Request for Comment (RFC) number. Many problems with protocols have been identified by sharp reviewers and corrected before the protocol was established as a standard.
But protocol definitions are made and reviewed by fallible humans. Likewise, protocols are implemented by fallible humans. For example, TCP connections are established through sequence numbers. The client (initiator) sends a sequence number to open a connection, the server responds with that number and a sequence number of its own, and the client responds with the server's sequence number. Suppose (as pointed out by Morris [MOR85]) someone can guess a client's next sequence number. That person could impersonate the client in an interchange. Sequence numbers are incremented regularly, so it can be easy to predict the next number. (Similar protocol problems are summarized in [BEL89].)
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