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This paper presents a constrained function based message authentication (CFA) scheme for wireless sensor networks, which meets all the requirements of the so-called sensor authentication criteria, while most of the existing schemes only achieve partial requirements. In particular, to the best of our knowledge, CFA is the first authentication scheme supporting en-route filtering with only a single packet overhead. We examine the CFA scheme from both the theoretical and experimental aspects. Our method has also been practically implemented on the TelosB compatible mote for performance evaluation.