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The constraints of lightweight distributed computing environments such as wireless sensor networks lend themselves to the use of symmetric cryptography to provide security services. The lack of central infrastructure after deployment of such networks requires the necessary symmetric keys to be predistributed to participating nodes. The rich mathematical structure of combinatorial designs has resulted in the proposal of several key predistribution schemes for wireless sensor networks based on designs. The authors review and examine the appropriateness of combinatorial designs as a tool for building key predistribution schemes suitable for such environments.
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