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STTR Phase I: Security for Wireless Devices: Security monitoring and intrusion…

Award Information

National Science Foundation
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2012 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Fingerprinting, Inc.
1899 Preston White Dr. Reston, VA 20191-5435
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2012
Title: STTR Phase I: Security for Wireless Devices: Security monitoring and intrusion detection in SDR and CR using Power Fingerprinting
Agency: NSF
Contract: 1217565
Award Amount: $150,000.00


This Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) Phase I project will determine the technical and commercial feasibility of applying a technique called Power Fingerprinting (PFP) to monitor the execution integrity of software-defined and cognitive radio (SDR and CR) systems and detect malicious intrusions. SDR and CR technologies are the foundation for enhanced access to the radio spectrum, but they are inherently vulnerable to cyber attacks, which increases interference risks and complicates regulatory compliance. PFP uses side-channel information to assess the integrity of critical software modules that, if disrupted, can impact spectral emission and information security. The research objectives for Phase I include: 1) demonstrate the feasibility of characterizing critical SDR/CR modules using PFP; 2) define PFP system architecture to enhance SDR/CR security; 3) detect attacks to sections critical for spectrum access; and 4) integrate PFP monitoring into SDR/CR regulatory process. The research necessary to achieve these objectives will be performed using open-source tools and libraries to implement dynamic spectrum access approaches. At the end of Phase I, a blind-test demonstration of PFP detecting execution violations will be provided and serve as the baseline to continue this research into a Phase II project to provide a commercial prototype. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project includes the development of an innovative mechanism to protect SDR and CR systems and their enhanced spectrum access capabilities, mitigating interference risks due to malicious attacks. This Phase I project will introduce a new perspective to cyber security by treating it as a signal detection and classification problem and introducing tangible quantitative metrics for integrity and trust. SDR and CR are crucial to use the electromagnetic spectrum more efficiently. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to effectively secure these devices, as they will be communicating sensitive information and supporting critical infrastructure, making them prime targets for cyber attacks. Commercially, this research has dual application in the commercial and defense wireless markets, particularly for resource-constrained and embedded platforms, including smart phones and tactical communication devices. The proposed approach has the potential to become a fundamental player in cyber-security by protecting the nation?s infrastructure and promoting further development of the economic base and employment. Furthermore, by allowing trustworthy deployment of SDR and CR technology, this research will help unleash the significant commercial opportunities that come with enhanced access to the radio spectrum.

Principal Investigator:

Carlos R. Aguayo-Gonzalez

Business Contact:

Carlos R. Aguayo-Gonzalez
Small Business Information at Submission:

Power Fingerprinting, Inc.
2200 Kraft Drive, Suite 1200 R Blacksburg, VA 24060-6748

EIN/Tax ID: 274067471
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
University of New Mexico
1 University Blvd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87131-
Contact: Ramiro L. Jordan
Contact Phone: 5052770111