Combinatorial design of key distribution mechanisms for wireless sensor networks

Camtepe, Seyit A. & Yener, Bulent (2004) Combinatorial design of key distribution mechanisms for wireless sensor networks. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York.

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Key distribution is one of the most challenging security issues in wireless sensor networks where sensor nodes are randomly scattered over a hostile territory. In such a sensor deployment scenario, there will be no prior knowledge of post deployment configuration. For security solutions requiring pair wise keys, it is impossible to decide how to distribute key pairs to sensor nodes before the deployment. Existing approaches to this problem are to assign more than one key, namely a key-chain, to each node. Key-chains are randomly drawn from a key-pool. Either two neighbouring nodes have a key in common in their key-chains, or there is a path, called key-path, among these two nodes where each pair of neighbouring nodes on this path has a key in common. Problem in such a solution is to decide on the key-chain size and key-pool size so that every pair of nodes can establish a session key directly or through a path with high probability. The size of the key-path is the key factor for the efficiency of the design. This paper presents novel, deterministic and hybrid approaches based on Combinatorial Design for key distribution. In particular, several block design techniques are considered for generating the key-chains and the key-pools. Comparison to probabilistic schemes shows that our combinatorial approach produces better connectivity with smaller key-chain sizes.

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52 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 58481
Item Type: Report
Refereed: No
Keywords: key management, wireless sensor networks, combinatorial design
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > COMPUTER SOFTWARE (080300) > Computer System Security (080303)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science
Past > Institutes > Information Security Institute
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Deposited On: 20 Mar 2013 04:38
Last Modified: 21 Mar 2013 00:28

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