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Modeling and Performance Evaluation of Backoff Misbehaving Nodes in CSMA/CA Networks

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3 Author(s)
Lu, Zhuo ; North Carolina State University, Raleigh ; Wang, Wenye ; Wang, Cliff

Backoff misbehavior, in which a wireless node deliberately manipulates its backoff time, can induce significant network problems, such as severe unfairness and denial of service. Although great progress has been made toward the design of countermeasures to backoff misbehavior, little attention has been focused on quantifying the gain of backoff misbehaviors. In this paper, to assess the gain that misbehaving nodes can obtain, we define and study two general classes of backoff misbehavior: continuous misbehavior, which keeps manipulating the backoff time unless it is disabled by countermeasures, and intermittent misbehavior, which tends to evade the detection of countermeasures by performing misbehavior sporadically. Our approach is to introduce a new performance metric, namely order gain, to characterize the performance benefits of misbehaving nodes in comparison to legitimate nodes in CSMA/CA-based wireless networks. We derive the order gains of both continuous and intermittent misbehaviors and further investigate the relation between our metric, order gain, and the throughput gain for a misbehaving node. We show that in IEEE 802.11 networks, the throughput ratio of a backoff misbehaving node to a legitimate node is either bounded above or proportional to the number of legitimate nodes. We use both simulations and experiments to validate our theoretical analysis and to further demonstrate the impact of a wide range of backoff misbehaviors on network performance in CSMA/CA-based wireless networks.

Published in:

Mobile Computing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:11 ,  Issue: 8 )