Efficient network camouflaging in wireless networks
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Camouflaging is about making something invisible or less visible. Network camouflaging is about hiding certain traffic information (e.g. traffic pattern, traffic flow identity, etc.) from internal and external eavesdroppers such that important information cannot be deduced from it for malicious use. It is one of the most challenging security requirements to meet in computer networks. Existing camouflaging techniques such as traffic padding, MIX-net, etc., incur significant performance degradation when protected networks are wireless networks, such as sensor networks and mobile ad hoc networks. The reason is that wireless networks are typically subject to resource constraints (e.g. bandwidth, power supply) and possess some unique characteristics (e.g. broadcast, node mobility) that traditional wired networks do not possess. This necessitates developing new techniques that take account of properties of wireless networks and are able to achieve a good balance between performance and security. In this three-part dissertation we investigate techniques for providing network camouflaging services in wireless networks. In the first part, we address a specific problem in a hierarchical multi-task sensor network, i.e. hiding the links between observable traffic patterns and user interests. To solve the problem, a temporally constant traffic pattern, called cover traffic pattern, is needed. We describe two traf- fic padding schemes that implement the cover traffic pattern and provide algorithms for achieving the optimal energy efficiencies with each scheme. In the second part, we explore the design of a MIX-net based anonymity system in mobile ad hoc networks. The objective is to hide the source-destination relationship with respect to each connection. We survey existing MIX route determination algorithms that do not account for dynamic network topology changes, which may result in high packet loss rate and large packet latency. We then introduce adaptive algorithms to overcome this problem. In the third part, we explore the notion of providing anonymity support at MAC layer in wireless networks, which employs the broadcast property of wireless transmission. We design an IEEE 802.11-compliant MAC protocol that provides receiver anonymity for unicast frames and offers better reliability than pure broadcast protocol.
Jiang, Shu (2005). Efficient network camouflaging in wireless networks. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from