Attack-Resistant Location Estimation in Wireless Sensor Networks

Speaker: Dr. Peng Ning, North Carolina State University
Abstract: Recent technological advances have made it possible to develop distributed sensor networks consisting of a large number of low-cost, low-power, and multi-functional sensor nodes that communicate in short distances through wireless links. Such sensor networks are ideal candidates for a wide range of applications such as monitoring of critical infrastructures and military operations. Many sensor network applications require sensors' locations to function correctly. Due to the cost reason and other operational constraints, it is usually necessary to provide a location discovery service to facilitate sensor nodes to determine their locations. Location discovery in sensor networks is vulnerable to malicious attacks in hostile environments. The security of location discovery can certainly be enhanced by authentication. However, the possible node compromises and the fact that location determination uses certain physical features (e.g., received signal strength) of radio signals make authentication not as effective as in traditional security applications. This talk will present two methods to tolerate malicious attacks against range-based location discovery in sensor networks. The first method filters out malicious beacon signals on the basis of the ``consistency'' among multiple beacon signals, while the second method tolerates malicious beacon signals by adopting an iteratively refined voting scheme. Both methods can survive malicious attacks even if the attacks bypass authentication, provided that the benign beacon signals constitute the majority of the beacon signals. This talk will also describe the implementation of these techniques on MICA2 motes running TinyOS, and the evaluation through both simulation and field experiments.
Biography: Peng Ning is currently an assistant professor of Computer Science in the College of Engineering at North Carolina State University. He received his PhD degree in Information Technology from George Mason University in 2001. Prior to his PhD study, he received an ME degree in Communication and Electronic Systems in 1997, and a BS degree in Information Science in 1994, both from University of Science and Technology of China. Peng Ning's research interests are mainly in computer and network security. His recent work is mostly in intrusion detection and security in ad-hoc and sensor networks. Peng Ning's research has been supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Army Research Office (ARO), the Advanced Research and Development Activity (ARDA), and the NCSU/Duke Center for Advanced Computing and Communication (CACC). Peng Ning is a recipient of NSF CAREER award. He is on the editorial boards of Ad-Hoc & Sensor Networks: an International Journal and IEE Proceedings Information Security, and is a guest editor for Journal of Computer Security Special Issue on Security of Ad-Hoc and Sensor Networks. Peng Ning has served on organizing committees or program committees for over twenty technical conferences or workshops related to computer and network security. Peng Ning is a founding member of the NCSU Cyber Defense Laboratory. He is a member of the ACM, the ACM SIGSAC, the IEEE, and the IEEE Computer Society.
Presentation On: Friday, February 10, 2006,
11:00 a.m. in room 1115, CSIC