Vulnerability and Protection for Distributed Consensus-Based Spectrum Sensing in Cognitive Radio Networks
Cooperative spectrum sensing is key to the success of cognitive radio networks. Recently, fully distributed cooperative spectrum sensing has been proposed for its high performance benefits particularly in cognitive radio ad hoc networks. However, the cooperative and fully distributed natures of such protocol make it highly vulnerable to malicious attacks, and make the defense very difficult. In this paper, the authors analyze the vulnerabilities of distributed sensing architecture based on a representative distributed consensus-based spectrum sensing algorithm. They find that such distributed algorithm is particularly vulnerable to a novel form of attack called covert adaptive data injection attack. The vulnerabilities are even magnified under multiple colluding attackers.