We are increasingly surrounded by simple (and not so simple) devices with computational and communication capability, which assist us in everyday tasks and together comprise the idea of an Internet-of-Things. To perform their duties these devices are often required to set up ad-hoc connections to interact, and this is could often be with another device or a system where no prior trust relationship exists between the parties. Establishing a secure connection between two devices in such an unstructured environment presents some interesting research problems. Unfortunately, not all these problems can be solved with conventional cryptographic mechanisms alone, and we need to look at alternative ways to reinforce existing security mechanisms by incorporating the physical context of a device into security protocols. Distance-bounding protocols allow a verifier to both authenticate a prover and evaluate whether the latter is located in his vicinity. These protocols are of particular interest in contactless systems, e.g., electronic payment or access control systems, which are vulnerable to distance-based frauds. This talk gives a briefly introduces the use of physical context in secure mechanisms before providing an overview on distance-bounding protocols.
Gerhard Hancke received B.Eng and M.Eng degrees in Computer Engineering from the University of Pretoria, South Africa, in 2002 and 2003. He received a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, in 2009 and a LLB from the University of South Africa, South Africa, in 2014. He joined City University of Hong Kong as faculty in 2013 where he is currently an Associate Professor. Prior to this, he worked as researcher with the Smart Card and IoT Security Centre and as teaching fellow with the Department of Information Security, at Royal Holloway, University of London (RHUL). His research interests are system security and reliable communication and distributed sensing for the industrial Internet-of-Things. In 2019 he was awarded J. David Irwin Early Career Award for “research and educational contributions and impact on secure and reliable technology for the Industrial Internet-of-Things” by IEEE IES. He is currently also an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, the IEEE Open Journal of the Industrial Electronics Society, Elsevier Ad Hoc Networks and IET Smart Cities.