Fingerprints in the ether: Using the physical layer for wireless authentication

Liang Xiao, Larry Greenstein, Narayan Mandayam, Wade Trappe

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

171 Scopus citations

Abstract

The wireless medium contains domain-specific information that can be used to complement and enhance traditional security mechanisms. In this paper we propose ways to exploit the fact that, in a typically rich scattering environment, the radio channel response decorrelates quite rapidly in space. Specifically, we describe a physical-layer algorithm that combines channel probing (M complex frequency response samples over a bandwidth W) with hypothesis testing to determine whether current and prior communication attempts are made by the same user (same channel response). In this way, legitimate users can be reliably authenticated and false users can be reliably detected. To evaluate the feasibility of our algorithm, we simulate spatially variable channel responses in real environments using the WiSE ray-tracing tool; and we analyze the ability of a receiver to discriminate between transmitters (users) based on their channel frequency responses in a given office environment For several rooms in the extremities of the building we considered, we have confirmed the efficacy of our approach under static channel conditions. For example, measuring five frequency response samples over a bandwidth of 100 MHz and using a transmit power of 100 mW, valid users can be verified with 99% confidence while rejecting false users with greater than 95% confidence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2007 IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC'07
Pages4646-4651
Number of pages6
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007
Event2007 IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC'07 - Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom
Duration: Jun 24 2007Jun 28 2007

Publication series

NameIEEE International Conference on Communications
ISSN (Print)0536-1486

Other

Other2007 IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC'07
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityGlasgow, Scotland
Period6/24/076/28/07

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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