Mobility Helps Peer-to-Peer Security
We propose a straightforward technique to provide peer-to-peer security in mobile networks. We show that far from being a hurdle, mobility can be exploited to set up security associations among users. We leverage on the temporary vicinity of users, during which appropriate cryptographic protocols are run. We illustrate the operation of the solution in two scenarios, both in the framework of mobile ad hoc networks. In the first scenario, we consider fully self-organized security: users authenticate each other by visual contact and by the activation of an appropriate secure side channel of their personal device; we show that the process can be fuelled by taking advantage of trusted acquaintances (the ``friends" mechanism). In the second scenario, we assume the presence of an off-line certification authority and we show how mobility helps to solve the security-routing interdependency cycle; in this case, the security protocol runs over one-hop radio links. We then show that the proposed solution is generic: it can be deployed on any mobile network and it can be implemented either with symmetric or with asymmetric cryptography. We provide a detailed performance analysis by studying the behavior of the solution on various mobility models.