Transmitter authentication in dynamic spectrum sharing


Recent advances in spectrum access technologies, such as software-defined radios, have made dynamic spectrum sharing (DSS) a viable option for addressing the spectrum shortage problem. However, these advances have also contributed to the increased possibility of “rogue” transmitter radios which may cause significant interference to other radios in DSS. One approach for countering such threats is to employ a transmitter authentication scheme at the physical (PHY) layer. In PHY-layer authentication, an authentication signal is generated by the transmitter, and embedded into the message signal. This enables a regulatory enforcement entity to extract the authentication signal from the received signal, uniquely identify a transmitter, and collect verifiable evidence of a rogue transmission that can be used later during an adjudication process. There are two primary technical challenges in devising a transmitter authentication scheme for DSS: (1) how to generate and verify the authentication signal such that the required security and privacy criteria are met; and (2) how to embed and extract the authentication signal without negatively impacting the performance of the transmitters and the receivers in DSS. With regard to dealing with the first challenge, the authentication schemes in the prior art, which provide privacy-preserving authentication, have limited practical value for use in large networks due to the high computational complexity of their revocation check procedures. In this dissertation, the novel approaches which significantly improve scalability of the transmitter authentication with respect to revocation, are proposed. With regard to dealing with the second challenge, in the existing PHY-layer authentication techniques, the authentication signal is embedded into the message signal in such a way that the authentication signal appears as noise to the message signal and vice versa. Hence, existing schemes are constrained by a fundamental tradeoff between the message signal’s signal to interference and noise ratio (SINR) and the authentication signal’s SINR. In this dissertation, the novel approaches which are not constrained by the aforementioned tradeoff between message and authentication signals, are proposed.

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