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This paper introduces a self-organized mechanism to control user access in ad hoc networks without requiring any infrastructure or a central administration entity. The proposed mechanism authenticates and monitors nodes with the so-called controller sets, which are resistant to the dynamic network membership. The analysis shows that the proposed scheme is robust even to collusion attacks and provides availability up to 90% better than proposals based on threshold cryptography. The performance improvement arises mostly from the controller sets autonomy to recover after network partitions.