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Exploiting and Defending Opportunistic Scheduling in Cellular Data Networks

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4 Author(s)
Radmilo Racic ; University of California Davis, Davis ; Denys Ma ; Hao Chen ; Xin Liu

Third Generation (3G) cellular networks take advantage of time-varying and location-dependent channel conditions of mobile users to provide broadband services. Under fairness and QoS constraints, they use opportunistic scheduling to efficiently utilize the available spectrum. Opportunistic scheduling algorithms rely on the collaboration among all mobile users to achieve their design objectives. However, we demonstrate that rogue cellular devices can exploit vulnerabilities in popular opportunistic scheduling algorithms, such as Proportional Fair (PF) and Temporal Fair (TF), to usurp the majority of time slots in 3G networks. Our simulations show that under realistic conditions, only five rogue device per 50-user cell can capture up to 95 percent of the time slots, and can cause 2-second end-to-end interpacket transmission delay on VoIP applications for every user in the same cell, rendering VoIP applications useless. To defend against this attack, we propose strengthening the PF and TF schedulers and a robust handoff scheme.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing  (Volume:9 ,  Issue: 5 )