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Traditional security protocols are mainly concerned with authentication and key establishment and rely on predistributed keys and properties of cryptographic operators. In contrast, new application areas are emerging that establish and rely on properties of the physical world. Examples include protocols for secure localization, distance bounding, and secure time synchronization. The authors present a formal model for modeling and reasoning about such physical security protocols. Their model extends standard, inductive, trace-based, symbolic approaches with a formalization of physical properties of the environment, namely communication, location, and time. In particular, communication is subject to physical constraints, for example, message transmission takes time determined by the communication medium used and the distance between nodes.
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