ERUPT: Energy-efficient tRUstworthy Provenance Trees for Wireless Sensor Networks


Sensor nodes are inherently unreliable and prone to

hardware or software faults. Thus, they may report untrustwor-

thy or inconsistent data. Assessing the trustworthiness of sensor data items can allow reliable sensing or monitoring of physical phenomena. A provenance-based trust framework can evaluate the trustworthiness of data items and sensor nodes based on the intuition that two data items with similar data values but with different provenance (i.e., forwarding path) can be considered more trustworthy. Forwarding paths of data items generated from redundantly deployed sensors should consist of trustworthy nodes and remain dissimilar. Unfortunately, operating many sensors with dissimilar paths consumes significant energy. In this paper, we formulate an optimization problem to identify a set of sensor nodes and their corresponding paths toward the base station that achieve a certain trustworthiness threshold, while keeping the energy consumption of the network minimal. We prove the NP-hardness of this problem and propose ERUPT, a simulated annealing solution. Testbed and simulation results show that ERUPT achieves high trustworthiness, while reducing total energy consumption by 32-50% with respect to current approaches.

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