ProxiMate: proximity-based secure pairing using ambient wireless signals
Author(s)Miller, Robert C.
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Forming secure associations between wireless devices that do not share a prior trust relationship is an important problem. This paper presents ProxiMate, a system that allows wireless devices in proximity to securely pair with one an- other autonomously by generating a common cryptographic key directly from their shared time-varying wireless environment. The shared key synthesized by ProxiMate can be used by the devices to authenticate each others’ physical proximity and then to communicate confidentially. Unlike traditional pairing approaches such as Diffie-Hellman, ProxiMate is secure against a computationally unbounded adversary and its computational complexity is linear in the size of the key. We evaluate ProxiMate using an experimental proto-type built using an open-source software-defined platform and demonstrate its effectiveness in generating common secret bits. We further show that it is possible to speed up secret key synthesis by monitoring multiple RF sources simultaneously or by shaking together the devices that need to be paired. Finally, we show that ProxiMate is resistant to even the most powerful attacker who controls the public RF source used by the legitimate devices for pairing.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory
MobiSys '11 Proceedings of the 9th international conference on Mobile systems, applications, and services
Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Mathur, Suhas, rob Miller, Alexander Varshavsky, Wade Trappe and Narayan Mandayam. "ProxiMate: proximity-based secure pairing using ambient wireless signals." Proceeding of the MobiSys '11, Proceedings of the 9th international conference on Mobile systems, applications, and services, Bethesda, Maryland, USA, June 28-July 01, pages 211-224.
Author's final manuscript