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A Proposal for a Comprehensive Approach to Protocol Development for Secure Wireless Networking

Event Type
CSL Communications Seminar
May 9, 2013   4:00 - 5:00 pm  
Jonathan Ponniah, PhD Student, Electrical Engineering, UIUC


Traditionally, wireless network protocols have been designed for performance. Subsequently, as attacks are identi''ed, patches are developed. This results in an ''arms race'' where one is never con''dent at any stage about what other vulnerabilities may still exist. We reverse this process. Starting with a model of node capabilities, we develop a complete protocol suite that takes the system all the way from startup when the nodes are ''born,'' to a secure network transporting nearly min-max utility optimized data, where the minimization is over all behaviors of the bad nodes, and the maximization is over all protocols.  Moreover, under the protocol, the bad nodes gain nothing beyond just jamming and/or cooperating on each concurrent transmission set; other Byzantine behaviors are not further helpful.

Our approach supersedes much previous work that deals with several types of attacks such as wormhole, rushing, partial deafness, routing loops, routing black holes, routing gray holes, network partition attacks, and all other Byzantine behaviors, and, importantly, obviates the need to identify and counter such types of attacks.


Jonathan Ponniah is currently a PhD candidate in Electrical Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  He completed his undergraduate and masters studies at the University of Waterloo, Canada.  His research interests are in distributed systems, wireless security, network optimization, and network information theory.

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