Enhancing Location Privacy in Wireless LAN Through Disposable Interface Identifiers: A Quantitative Analysis

Marco Gruteser, Dirk Grunwald

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

52 Scopus citations

Abstract

The recent proliferation of wireless local area networks (WLAN) has introduced new location privacy risks, An adversary controlling several access points could triangulate a client's position. In addition, interface identifiers uniquely identify each client, allowing tracking of location over time. We enhance location privacy through frequent disposal of a client's interface identifier. The described system curbs the adversary's ability to continuously track a client's position. Design challenges include selecting new interface identifiers, detecting address collisions at the MAC layer, and timing identifier switches to balance network disruptions against privacy protection. Using a modified authentication protocol, network operators can still control access to their network. An analysis of a public WLAN usage trace shows that disposing addresses before reassociation already yields significant privacy improvements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the First ACM International Workshop on Wireless Mobile Applications and Services on WLAN Hotspots, WMASH 2003
Pages46-55
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the First ACM International Workshop on Wireless Mobile Applications and Services on WLAN Hotspots, WMASH 2003 - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Sep 19 2003Sep 19 2003

Publication series

NameProceedings of the first ACM International Workshop on Wireless Mobile Applications and Services on WLAN Hotspots

Other

OtherProceedings of the First ACM International Workshop on Wireless Mobile Applications and Services on WLAN Hotspots, WMASH 2003
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA
Period9/19/039/19/03

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications

Keywords

  • Interface Identifiers
  • Location Privacy
  • Wireless LAN

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