A Framework for MIMO-based Packet Header Obfuscation

Yue Cao, Ahmed O.F. Atya, Shailendra Singh, Zhiyun Qian, Srikanth V. Krishnamurthy, Thomas La Porta, Prashant Krishnamurthy, Lisa Marvel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


Eavesdroppers can exploit exposed packet headers towards attacks that profile clients and their data flows. In this paper, we propose FOG, a framework for effective header blinding using MIMO, to thwart eavesdroppers. FOG effectively tracks header bits as they traverse physical (PHY) layer sub-systems that perform functions like scrambling and interleaving. It combines multiple blinding signals for more effective and less predictable obfuscation, as compared to using a fixed blinding signal. We implement FOG on the WARP platform and demonstrate via extensive experiments that it yields better obfuscation than prior schemes that deploy full packet blinding. It causes a bit error rate (BER) of > 40 % at an eavesdropper if two blinding streams are sent during header transmissions. Furthermore, FOG incurs a very small throughput hit of ≈ 5 % with one blinding stream (and 9 % with two streams). Full packet blinding incurs much higher throughput hits (25 % with one stream and 50 % with two streams).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationINFOCOM 2018 - IEEE Conference on Computer Communications
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781538641286
StatePublished - Oct 8 2018
Event2018 IEEE Conference on Computer Communications, INFOCOM 2018 - Honolulu, United States
Duration: Apr 15 2018Apr 19 2018

Publication series

NameProceedings - IEEE INFOCOM
ISSN (Print)0743-166X


Other2018 IEEE Conference on Computer Communications, INFOCOM 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Computer Science
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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