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Title: Improvements to data transportation security in wireless sensor networks
Author: Ekonomou, Elias
ISNI:       0000 0004 2697 7071
Awarding Body: University of Salford
Current Institution: University of Salford
Date of Award: 2010
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Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) are computer networks consisting of miniaturised electronic devices that aim to gather and report information about their environment. The devices are limited in computational, data storage and communication ability. Furthermore, the devices communicate via a wireless, unregulated medium and usually operate on finite power sources. Security in Wireless Sensor Networks is the research area that seeks to provide adequate and energy-efficient security mechanisms for WSNs. Such provision is required in order to increase their range of possible applications and allow them to be deployed in critical and valuable environments. Existing security mechanisms for larger computer networks are inappropriate since they were not designed for the resourceconstrained environment of WSNs. There are some purpose-built solutions but this research has found potential security or efficiency problems with each of them. This thesis contributes SecRose, a security mechanism for the data-transportation layer of Wireless Sensor Networks. The solution attempts to provide higher level of security than currently provided, without introduction of significant energy overheads and by retaining backwards compatibility. SecRose achieves its security objectives by introducing a number of innovations and improvements. SecRose innovates in the provision of freshness and semantic security by altering the secret cryptographic keys. The process is managed at the transportation level by the basic key management mechanism. The integrity and safety of the key-changing operation is achieved by authenticating all packets and their acknowledgements. This behaviour contrasts with other proposals, which are based on openly transmitted Initialisation Vectors, and allows SecRose to provide better security than most of them, including TinySec, the accepted standard. In addition, measurements show that SecRose provides better energy-efficiency than other proposals. In particular, the solution requires less energy than TinySec in all cases and it can even be more efficient than the base Operating System, the TinyOS, which does not provide any security at all.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available