Secure Networking Using Network Coding

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Overview

This project determines the fundamental limits of network secrecy from a network coding perspective, and then applies this theory to improve security guarantees in peer-to-peer and wireless networks. As network coding gains prominence as an important strategy for both wired and wireless networks, the project identifies both the advantages and vulnerabilities from using network coding. Subsequently, the effort develops a design methodology that exploits the advantages while carefully compensating for the vulnerabilities.

This project analyzes networks under both outsider and insider attacks. Specifically, coding mechanisms are developed to combat an external eavesdropper. Also, a combination of cryptographic and information-theoretic tools are used to combat internal modification attacks on the network. The results are then used in two case studies: eavesdropper attacks on wireless mesh networks and pollution attacks on P2P content distribution systems.

Secure network coded systems, once well understood, can greatly impact how networks are designed and deployed. Nearly every network setting (wireless, wired or heterogeneous) can benefit in terms of improved resilience (in addition to other performance benefits such as throughput) in its design. Case studies in this effort are designed to help transition the theoretical principles developed into practical algorithms.

Publications

    Journals

    Node-Capture Resilient Key Establishment in Sensor Networks: Design Space and Protocols. Andrew Newell, Hongyi Yao, Alex Ryker, Tracey Ho, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. To appear in ACM Computing Surveys.
    On the Practicality of Cryptographic Defenses against Pollution Attacks in Wireless Network Coding. Andrew Newell, Jing Dong, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In ACM Computing Surveys, June 2013. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Pollution Attacks and Defense in Inter-flow Network Coding Systems. Jing Dong, Reza Curtmola, Cristina Nita-Rotaru, and David Yau. In IEEE Transactions on Dependable and Secure Systems, Sept. 2012. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Practical Defenses Against Pollution Attacks in Wireless Network Coding. Jing Dong, Reza Curtmola, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In ACM Transactions on Systems and Information Security, vol. 14 no. 1, May 2011. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Secure Network Coding for Wireless Mesh Networks: Threats, Challenges, and Directions. Jing Dong, Reza Curtmola, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In Computer Communications (Elsevier), Nov 2009. [PDF][BIBTEX]

    Conferences

    Split Null Keys: A Null Space Based Defense for Pollution Attacks in Wireless Network Coding. Andrew Newell and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In Proc. of IEEE Communications Society Conference on Sensor, Mesh, and Ad Hoc Communications and Networks (SECON), June 2012. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Entropy Attacks and Countermeasures in Wireless Network Coding. Andrew Newell, Reza Curtmola, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In Proc. of ACM Conference on Security and Privacy in Wireless and Mobile Networks (WiSec), Apr. 2012. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Key Agreement for Wireless Networks in the Presence of Active Adversaries. Hongyi Yao, Tracey Ho, and Cristina Nita-Rotaru. In Proc. of Asilomar Conference on Signals, Systems, and Computers, 6 pages, Nov. 2011. [PDF][BIBTEX]
    Pollution Attacks and Defenses in Wireless Inter-flow Network Coding Systems. Jing Dong, Reza Curtmola, Cristina Nita-Rotaru, and David Yau. In Workshop on Wireless Network Coding with SECON 2010. [PDF][BIBTEX]

Students

    Current Members

    Collaborators and Previous Members

    • Reza Curtmola
    • Jing Dong

Funding

This project is funded by the NSF NETS Program, Collaborative Research: Secure Networking Using Network Coding, Team: Tracey Ho (Caltech), Cristina Nita-Rotaru (Purdue University), Emina Soljanin (Bell Labs), and Sriram Vishwanath (UT Austin). This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5).