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Providing security support for mobile ad-hoc networks is challenging for several reasons: (a) wireless networks are susceptible to attacks ranging from passive eavesdropping to active interfering, occasional break-ins by adversaries may be inevitable in a large time window; (b) mobile users demand "anywhere, anytime" services; (c) a scalable solution is needed for a large-scale mobile network. In this paper, we describe a solution that supports ubiquitous security services for mobile hosts, scales to network size, and is robust against break-ins. In our design, we distribute the certification authority functions through a threshold secret sharing mechanism, in which each entity holds a secret share and multiple entities in a local neighborhood jointly provide complete services. We employ localized certification schemes to enable ubiquitous services. We also update the secret shares to further enhance robustness against break-ins. Both simulations and implementation confirm the effectiveness of our design.
Date of Conference: 14-14 Nov. 2001