Cisco CCNP: How to Configure IP Source Guard?

IP Source Guard is a per-interface traffic filter that permits IP traffic only when the IP address and MAC address of each packet matches one of two sources of IP and MAC address bindings:

•Entries in the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) snooping binding table.

•Static IP source entries that you configure.

Filtering on trusted IP and MAC address bindings helps prevent attacks that rely on spoofing attacks, in which an attacker uses the IP address of a valid host to gain unauthorized network access. To circumvent IP Source Guard, an attacker would have to spoof both the IP address and the MAC address of a valid host.

You can enable IP Source Guard on Layer 2 interfaces that are not trusted by DHCP snooping. IP Source Guard supports interfaces that are configured to operate in access mode and trunk mode. When you initially enable IP Source Guard, all inbound IP traffic on the interface is blocked except for the following:

DHCP packets, which DHCP snooping inspects and then forwards or drops, depending upon the results of inspecting the packet.

•IP traffic from static IP source entries that you have configured in the NX-OS device.

The device permits the IP traffic when DHCP snooping adds a binding table entry for the IP address and MAC address of an IP packet or when you have configured a static IP source entry.

The device drops IP packets when the IP address and MAC address of the packet do not have a binding table entry or a static IP source entry. For example, assume that the show ip dhcp snooping binding command displays the following binding table entry:

MacAddress         IpAddress    LeaseSec   Type        VLAN      Interface

———-         ———-   ———  ——      ——-    ———

00:02:B3:3F:3B:99       6943    dhcp-snooping  10      Ethernet2/3


If the device receives an IP packet with an IP address of, IP Source Guard forward the packet only if the MAC address of the packet is 00:02:B3:3F:3B:99.

In the article ‘How to Configure DHCP Snooping?’ We built a nice foundation in switch security with DHCP Snooping, which IP Source Guard (IPSG) is reliant on.

IPSG helps to prevent IP spoofing, which is when an attacker claims the IP address of a server or device on your network. By pretending to be that device, the attacker could potentially direct sensitive data towards a port he’s connected to. Today, we’ll see how IPSG can mitigate this hijacking attack.

The topology

Configuring IP Source Guard-01

Firstly we need to configure DHCP Snooping as a prerequisite. So just to recap, here’s the config:

SW1(config)#ip dhcp snooping
SW1(config)#ip dhcp snooping vlan 1
SW1(config)#int fa0/11
SW1(config-if)#ip dhcp snooping trust
SW1(config)#int fa0/24
SW1(config-if)#ip dhcp snooping limit rate 20

How does IPSG work?

IPSG is configured at the access layer and uses the DHCP Snooping database, or static IP binding entries, to dynamically create ACLs on a per-port basis (these can’t be viewed in the running-configuration). Any traffic which doesn’t match the binding entries is dropped in hardware. However, the port won’t go into the errdisable state – it won’t even display a violation message at the console. IPSG is supported on layer two ports and cannot be used on layer 3 ports or SVIs.

Configuring IPSG

Configuration commands vary slightly between Catalyst 6500/4500 and lower-end switches. I used a 3550 for this example. When enabling IPSG, there are two checks which can be put in place. The first is to verify that the source IP address in the incoming packet matches the IP binding in the DHCP Snooping database (or static binding), and the second check uses port security to verify the source MAC address is what the switch expects it to be.

Let’s go ahead and enable IPSG with the IP source check first:

SW1(config)#int fa0/24
SW1(config-if)#ip verify source

Now that that’s enabled, we verify:

SW1#sh ip verify source

Interface  Filter-type  Filter-mode  IP-address       Mac-address        Vlan
———      ———–      ———–        —————     —————–      ———-
Fa0/24            ip                 active                                               1


We can see that the “Filter-type” is “ip”, so our IP source check is functioning. Now, in order to use the MAC address check we must first enable port security on access interface fa0/24:

SW1(config)#int fa0/24
SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security
SW1(config-if)#ip verify source port-security

The last line of configuration has the port-security parameter attached to it which adds the MAC check. Let’s verify again:

SW1#sh ip verify source

Interface  Filter-type  Filter-mode  IP-address       Mac-address              Vlan
———      ———–      ———–        —————     —————–            ———-
Fa0/24       ip-mac          active        00:1B:78:4C:05:28  1

We can see that the “Filter-type” is now “ip-mac”, and our client’s MAC address is listed in the Mac-address column. Great! But what if we have some hosts on our network with static IPs, or we’re not running DHCP? We can create static bindings instead of using the DHCP Snooping database. Let’s create one for interface fa0/14:

N.B: When using static bindings, you still need to enable DHCP Snooping for the VLAN the hosts reside in.

SW1#sh mac address-table int fa0/14

Vlan    Mac Address           Type                Ports
—-      ———–                   ——–              —–
1          5c26.0a70.c59a    DYNAMIC     Fa0/14


We find the MAC address of our new client, add an ip source binding, and enable IPSG on the interface:

SW1(config)#ip source binding ?

H.H.H  binding MAC address

SW1(config)#ip source binding 5c26.0a70.c59a vlan 1 int fa0/14
SW1(config)#int fa0/14
SW1(config-if)#switchport port-security
SW1(config-if)#ip verify source port-security

Let’s verify our bindings and the IPSG table:

Configuring IP Source Guard-02

Configuring IP Source Guard-03

We can see both our DHCP Snooping database entry and our static IP source binding appear in the tables.

More Important Point

For IPSG to be effective, it needs to be enabled on all access ports at the network edge, not just those hosting devices you want to protect. When IPSG is enabled, there must either be a static IP/MAC binding or an entry in the DHCP Snooping binding table for every interface or traffic will be dropped. If IPSG was not enabled on port fa0/21 for example, an attacker could connect to that port and assume the IP address of a machine on the network. Sure, this could be mitigated with a tight port-security configuration, but there would still be a hole in the IPSG implementation. The best solution uses IPSG, DHCP Snooping, Port-Security and Dynamic ARP configuration hand-in-hand.

—Reference from

More Related Networking Tips:

How to Configure DHCP Snooping?

How to Configure DHCP Snooping in a Cisco Catalyst Switch?

How to configure IP Source Guard on NX-OS devices?

Configuring IP Source Guard

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