[talks] Stephen Yi-Hsien Lin MSE thesis talk

Melissa M. Lawson mml at CS.Princeton.EDU
Fri Apr 11 08:23:43 EDT 2014

Stephen Yi-Hsien Lin will present his MSE thesis talk on Wednesday 
April 16 at 3PM in Room 401 (note room!).  The members of his 
committee are:  Andrew Appel, advisor and Ed Felten, reader. 
Everyone is invited to attend his talk.  His abstract follows 

ROS, a flexible framework for developing robot software, has been widely used to implement many robots. ROS is highly decoupled into different function nodes in order to encourage collaborative development. However, these nodes communicate through non-authenticated messages over an insecure communication channel, which makes the robots highly susceptible to cyber attacks. Adversary might be able to inject malicious commands into the communication channel in order to take control over the robot. Therefore, a secure message authentication mechanism must be introduced to ROS in order to prevent such attack.

We developed a message authentication mechanism based on HMAC to address this problem. Our design goal is to not only protect the integrity and authentication of the messages in ROS but also a) bring as few intrusion to the system as possible, b) maintain backward compatibility so the code developed in the past could also benefit from our message authentication package with very little modification and c) make the usage as simple as possible. Besides the message authentication mechanism, we also proposed a key generation and exchange protocol on ROS. Our measurements comparing the throughput and latency before and after introducing message authentication indicated that the performance of the whole system is still reasonable after introducing the message authentication functionality.

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