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Firewall Filters That Handle Fragmented Packets Overview

You can create stateless firewall filters that handle fragmented packets destined for the Routing Engine. By applying these policies to the Routing Engine, you protect against the use of IP fragmentation as a means to disguise TCP packets from a firewall filter.

For example, consider an IP packet that is fragmented into the smallest allowable fragment size of 8 bytes (a 20-byte IP header plus an 8-byte payload). If this IP packet carries a TCP packet, the first fragment (fragment offset of 0) that arrives at the device contains only the TCP source and destination ports (first 4 bytes), and the sequence number (next 4 bytes). The TCP flags, which are contained in the next 8 bytes of the TCP header, arrive in the second fragment (fragment offset of 1).

See RFC 1858, Security Considerations for IP Fragment Filtering.