Efficient access control for wireless sensor data

Sorniotti, Alessandro;Molva, Refik;Gomez, Laurent
PIMRC 2008, IEEE International Symposium on Personal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications, 15-18 September, 2008, Cannes, France

Although very developed in many sectors (databases, filesystems), access control schemes are still somewhat elusive when it comes to wireless sensor networks. However, it is clear that many WSN systems - such as healthcare and automotive ones - need a controlled access to data that sensor nodes produce, given its high sensitivity. Enforcing access control in wireless sensor networks is a particularly difficult task due to the limited computational capacity of wireless sensor nodes. In this paper we present a full-fledged access control scheme for wireless sensor data. We enforce access control through data encryption, thus embedding access control in sensor data units. We also propose a lightweight key generation mechanism, based on cryptographic hash functions, that allows for hierarchical key derivation. The suggested protocol only relies on simple operations, does not require interactions between nodes and data consumers and has minimal storage requirements.

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