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Secure and Lightweight Network Admission and Transmission Protocol for Body Sensor Networks


Daojing He ; Chun Chen ; Chan, S. ; Jiajun Bu ; Pingxin Zhang

A body sensor network (BSN) is a wireless network of biosensors and a local processing unit, which is commonly referred to as the personal wireless hub (PWH). Personal health information (PHI) is collected by biosensors and delivered to the PWH before it is forwarded to the remote healthcare center for further processing. In a BSN, it is critical to only admit eligible biosensors and PWH into the network. Also, securing the transmission from each biosensor to PWH is essential not only for ensuring safety of PHI delivery, but also for preserving the privacy of PHI. In this paper, we present the design, implementation, and evaluation of a secure network admission and transmission subsystem based on a polynomial-based authentication scheme. The procedures in this subsystem to establish keys for each biosensor are communication efficient and energy efficient. Moreover, based on the observation that an adversary eavesdropping in a BSN faces inevitable channel errors, we propose to exploit the adversary’s uncertainty regarding the PHI transmission to update the individual key dynamically and improve key secrecy. In addition to the theoretical analysis that demonstrates the security properties of our system, this paper also reports the experimental results of the proposed protocol on resource-limited sensor platforms, which show the efficiency of our system in practice.

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Tags: Body sensor networks (BSNs), efficiency, key update, network admission and transmission, security