Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Doctor of Philosophy


Electrical and Computer Engineering


Xianbin Wang


Due to the open nature of radio propagation, information security in wireless communications has been facing more challenges compared to its counterpart in wired networks. Authentication, defined as an important aspect of information security, is the process of verifying the identity of transmitters to prevent against spoofing attacks. Traditionally, secure wireless communications is achieved by relying solely upon higher layer cryptographic mechanisms. However, cryptographic approaches based on complex mathematical calculations are inefficient and vulnerable to various types of attacks. Recently, researchers have shown that the unique properties of wireless channels can be exploited for authentication enhancement by providing additional security protection against spoofing attacks. Motivated by the vulnerability of existing higher-layer security techniques and the security advantages provided by exploring the physical link properties, five novel physical layer authentication techniques to enhance the security performance of wireless systems are proposed. The first technique exploits the inherent properties of CIR to achieve robust channel-based authentication. The second and third techniques utilize a long-range channel predictor and additional multipath delay characteristics, respectively, to enhance the CIR-based authentication. The fourth technique exploits the advantages of AF cooperative relaying to improve traditional channel-based authentication. The last technique employs an embedded confidential signaling link to secure the legitimate transmissions in OFDM systems.