KDSR: A Scalable Key Distribution Protocol to Secure Multi-Hop Routing in Large-Scale Wireless Sensor Networks

KDSR: A Scalable Key Distribution Protocol to Secure Multi-Hop Routing in Large-Scale Wireless Sensor Networks

Abderrahmen Guermazi (Higher Institute of Technological Studies, University of Sfax, Sfax, Tunisia), Abdelfettah Belghith (Department of Computer Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia) and Mohamed Abid (Computer Embedded Ssytems (CES) Laboratory, National School of Engineers of Sfax, Sfax, Tunisia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2454-1.ch015


This article deals with a key distribution protocol to secure routing in large-scale Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) and proposes a new protocol called KDSR. The authors' protocol has two originalities: to provide a secure network structure for large-scale WSNs, and to use lightweight local process to share efficiently the Local Broadcast Keys, the Pairwise Keys and the Global Broadcast Key. These keys are useful to secure several communication patterns in WSNs: one-to-many, one-to-one and one-to-all. Security analyses show that KDSR can withstand several attacks against WSNs. Through fast node revocation process, KDSR offers a good resilience against node capture. Immunity against MiM and replay attacks are well checked with the AVISPA tools. The experimentations are done on real TelosB motes and through the TOSSIM simulator. Simulation results confirm that KDSR is scalable, provides a good key connectivity and a good resilience. Comparison to earlier work shows that KDSR causes less computation complexity, less communication overhead and much less storage space even for large-scale WSNs.
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1. Introduction

Wireless Sensor Networks can be deployed in non-controlled environments like agriculture fields, reserves or parks. Routing is essential to any WSN application. In literature, many routing protocols have been proposed to disseminate data in WSNs (Akkaya, 2005). Unfortunately, they have not considered security; hence they may be subject of many possible attacks (Karlof, 2003; Singh, 2013) such as eavesdropping, flooding, black hole, Sybil, replay attacks and node capture. The compromising of the routing protocols leads to fatal consequences like data flow blocking, data diversion, low availability, energy dissipation and network disturbance. Security services (integrity, authentication and confidentiality) which are based on cryptography can be used to protect routing protocols. Due to resource limitation of sensor nodes, a public cryptographic algorithm doesn’t fit into sensor nodes. As a result, there is a need for key distribution mechanisms which use only low-cost operations like symmetric cryptography, hash-function, pseudo-random function.

In literature, some key distribution schemes are proposed to WSNs (Zhang, 2009; Simplício, 2010; Yang, 2015). However, most of them did not take into account the nature of the WSN application (Roy, 2009) or routing protocol specificities (Al-Karaki, 2004), like random deployment of sensor nodes, dimension of the controlled environment, sensor network size, and communication paradigms. What is more, strong security primitives provide a high security level, but due to their high cost (computational complexity, huge storage space and high communication overhead), they are not adequate to resource constrained sensor nodes (Zhou, 2008).

In this work, authors look for designing a key distribution protocol called KDSR which is intended to secure communication in large-scale WSNs. KDSR has two main objectives: (1) To create a secure network structure, (2) to share efficiently adequate keys to secure several communication paradigms for multi-hop routing protocols.

So KDSR trace securely all possible routing paths towards the base station, and at the same time, it shares 3 types of keys: Local Broadcast Keys, Pairwise Keys and a Global Broadcast Key. These keys are useful to secure to secure respectively 3 communication patterns: one-to-many, one-to-one and one-to-all.

The remaining of this paper is organized as follows: section 2 gives an overview on basic key distribution schemes and their suitability to secure multi-hop routing in large-scale WSNs. Section 3 describes KDSR, the proposed key distribution protocol. Section 4 deals with a security analysis against the most known attacks in WSNs. The experimentation and simulation results are discussed in section 5. Section 6 gives performance evaluation and comparison to earlier work. Finally, the paper is concluded in the 7th section.

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