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Proceedings Paper

Channel signature authentication for secure optical communications
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Paper Abstract

Security in optical communications has been recently a concern due primarily of the vast amount and the sensitivity of information that a single fiber carries. It is generally accepted that data security is encrypted by the end-user and that the optical network is not easy to tap as it was with wired networks. However, the sophistication of eavesdroppers has increased and if an optical link is accessed, then the encryption code of data can be broken with the use of supercomputers. In addition to data eavesdropping, eavesdroppers may access the link for malicious attacks, or for transmitting erroneous data by mimicking a source. Therefore, it is important that the receiver has the means and intelligence to recognize the signature of the source and the optical channel so that when the link is tapped, the receiver recognizes it and it alerts the network management or it triggers a data rerouting process. In fact, an optical channel, including source, fiber and optical components, has its own optical parameters that constitute a signature. These parameters are the result of linear and non-linear phenomena that affect the quality characteristics of the optical signal and which can not be mimicked. Therefore, the understanding of optical parameters that define the optical channel signature is very critical. In this paper we provide an analysis of the factors affecting the signal quality and thus they constitute the signature of the optical channel, we model the optical channel and demonstrate via simulations that small parametric variation affect the signature of the channel. As a result, monitoring the signal parameters leads to source and channel authentication whereas detecting the parametric variability of channel deducts channel degradation or tapping.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 October 2005
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 5986, Unmanned/Unattended Sensors and Sensor Networks II, 598614 (26 October 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.635226
Show Author Affiliations
Stamatios V. Kartalopoulos, Univ. of Oklahoma (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5986:
Unmanned/Unattended Sensors and Sensor Networks II
Edward M. Carapezza, Editor(s)

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