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Delay Tolerant Network Security. -a literary survey. Venkata Krishna Sangeetha. In a bird’s view. Existing standard networks Probing reasons for a new network DTN in a few words Architecture explained Services Is it perfect ? Threat Model Why and what need for security?

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Delay tolerant network security
Delay Tolerant Network Security

-a literary survey

Venkata Krishna Sangeetha

In a bird’s view

  • Existing standard networks

  • Probing reasons for a new network

  • DTN in a few words

  • Architecture explained

  • Services

  • Is it perfect?

  • Threat Model

  • Why and what need for security?

  • Bundle: The Big Daddy

  • Schemes tabulated

  • Ending the discussion

Internet Today

  • Successful at interconnecting communication devices across the globe

  • Based on TCP/IP protocol suite and wired links

  • Connected in end-to-end, low-delay paths between sources and destinations

  • Low error rates and relatively symmetric bidirectional data rates

Why a Delay Tolerant Network?

Intermittent Connectivity: TCP/IP protocols fail when network partitioning occurs.

Long or Variable Delays: Long delays between nodes and variable queuing delays contribute to end to end delays defeating internet protocols and applications.

Asymmetric Data Rates: Large asymmetries in data rates are not supported by the Internet.

High error Rates: The error rate increases with the end-end retransmission of packets.

Dtn overview
DTN Overview

  • Overlay network

  • Connecting disconnected or heterogeneous networks (network of internets)

  • Store-and-Forward network

  • Typical resource-challenged networks

Open Issues in Delay Tolerant Networks

  • Key Management: Lack of a key distribution service in a high delay/ disrupted environment.

  • Handling Replays: A generic DTN replay detection scheme is hard to determine.

  • Traffic Analysis: Protection against traffic is debatable.

  • Routing protocol security: Inherent uncertainty in the network makes routing a problem.

  • Multicast/ Anycast security: Current architecture does not support such endpoints.

  • Performance Issues: Tradeoff between security and performance due to the added overhead.

Dtn security requirements characteristics
DTN Security Requirements & Characteristics

  • Lack of end- to – end Connectivity: Traditional round key agreements do not work.

  • Fragmentation: Splitting of a message into fragments or “bundles”.

  • Resource scarcity: Contact time introduces limitations.

  • Bundle Accumulation: Store and forward approach may lead to bundle accumulation.

  • Authentication: Essential for every node to authenticate the data.

  • Confidentiality: Ensuring that the sensitive information is not revealed to unauthorized parties.

  • Integrity: To ensure that transmitted messages cannot be altered.

  • Privacy/Anonymity: User location should not be revealed.

Bundle protocol security
Bundle Protocol Security

  • Data is sent in the form of bundles

  • Different types of blocks implemented to provide security services at various levels like hop-by-hop authentication, payload confidentiality and integrity in each bundle

  • Not all nodes have security capabilities

Bundle security protocol specification
Bundle Security Protocol Specification

  • Bundle Authentication Block – ensure authenticity and integrity of bundle along a single security hop.

    • Uses HMAC

  • Payload Integrity Block – authenticity and integrity of the payload along the PIB security-source to PIB security-destination.

    • Uses RSA-SHA256

  • Payload Confidentiality Block – indicates payload is encrypted to protect the content.


  • Extension Security Block – provides security for non-payload blocks in a bundle

    • RSA-AES128-EXT

Drawing conclusions
Drawing Conclusions

  • DTN is an overlay network connecting various types of networks

  • Security considerations for this type of challenging networks is difficult.

  • Security considerations for the below layers usually apply for this.

  • Current researching groups:

    * The Internet Research Task Force’s Delay-Tolerant Networking Research Group (DTNRG)

    * The InterPlaNetary (IPN) Internet Project,

    * NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    * Google Laboratory

    * Intel Research Corporation, etc.