Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2017/1039

Dronecrypt - An Ultra-Low Energy Cryptographic Framework for Small Aerial Drones

Muslum Ozgur Ozmen and Attila A. Yavuz

Abstract: Aerial drones are becoming an integral part of application domains such as package delivery, construction, monitoring and search/rescue operations. It is critical to ensure the cyber-security of networked aerial drone systems in these applications. Standard cryptographic services can be deployed to provide basic security services; however, they have been shown to be highly energy costly for small aerial drones. Therefore, there is a significant need for a highly energy efficient cryptographic framework that can meet the requirements of small aerial drones.

In this paper, {\em we propose a new cryptographic framework for small aerial drones, which offers significant energy efficiency and speed advantages over standard cryptographic techniques}: (i) We create (to the best of our knowledge), the first highly optimized public key infrastructure (PKI) based framework for small aerial drones, which provides energy efficient digital signature and public key encryption techniques by harnessing special pre-computation methods and optimized elliptic curves. (ii) We also integrate some of the most recent light-weight symmetric primitives into our PKI techniques to provide a full-fledged cryptographic framework. (iii) We implemented standard counterparts and our proposed techniques on an actual small aerial drone (Crazyflie 2.0), and provided an in-depth energy consumption analysis. Our experiments showed that {\em our new cryptographic framework achieves up to 35$\times$ lower energy consumption than its standard counterpart}. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first realization of an ultra-light cryptographic framework targeting small aerial drones. We make our framework open-source for public testing and adaptation purposes.

Category / Keywords: implementation / implementation, public-key cryptography, lightweight cryptography, drone security

Date: received 21 Oct 2017

Contact author: ozmenmu at oregonstate edu

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Version: 20171028:204544 (All versions of this report)

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