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Security Challenges in Wireless Sensor Network

Security Challenges in Wireless Sensor Network
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Author(s): Meenakshi Tripathi (Malaviya National Institute of Technology, India), M.S. Gaur (Malaviya National Institute of Technology, India) and V.Laxmi (Malaviya National Institute of Technology, India)
Copyright: 2014
Pages: 26
Source title: Security, Privacy, Trust, and Resource Management in Mobile and Wireless Communications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Danda B. Rawat (Georgia Southern University, USA), Bhed B. Bista (Iwate Prefectural University, Japan) and Gongjun Yan (University of Southern Indiana, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4691-9.ch014


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Wireless Sensor Networks are a subset of ad hoc networks. Their unique characteristics are smaller node size, high node density, unattended operation in remote areas. Dynamic topology and wireless communication make them vulnerable to numerous types of attacks. In addition to that, memory, processing, and energy constraint make it difficult to incorporate compute-intensive security solutions in these networks. Existing solutions for developing cost and energy efficient algorithms do not fit the security parameters for these resource constrained networks. As a result, these networks remain vulnerable to several types of attacks. This chapter presents a survey of various attacks at the different layers of WSN protocol stack, their detection, and countermeasures. Although every layer of the stack has its own security challenges, the network layer is most vulnerable to many security attacks because it provides an excellent basis for traffic monitoring activities, which helps the attacker form a strategy to perform the attack. The most common attacks on this layer are the Sybil attack, selective forwarding attack, wormhole attack, sinkhole attack, etc. This survey provides a comprehensive view of present attacking strategies to disrupt the normal functioning of WSN.

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