Leveraging Electromagnetic Emanations for IoT Security

Wednesday, September 12, 2018
12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
EER 1.518
Free and open to the public

The Internet of Things (IoT) has introduced new security risks for both consumers and businesses. Mitigation of these risks is difficult in part because IoT devices often have limited resources available for security monitoring, and limited hardware and system support for isolation and protection. Unfortunately, existing malware detection techniques require significant computation power and resources on the monitored device itself, making their deployment on IoT devices challenging.

To address the problem of the increasing need for IOT malware detection on one side, and severe difficulties in implementing such detection on the IOT devices themselves, this talk will present a method for finding execution of malware on IoT devices that allows external detection of malware on an IOT device without imposing any overhead, using any resources, and even without physical contact with that IOT device. To achieve that, we use electromagnetic (EM) emanations from the IOT device’s computational components to characterize the normal behavior of the software running on that device, and then monitor future EM emanations to detect when the observed behavior significantly deviates from the previously learned normal behavior. The talk will also present specialized antennas designed to pick up signals closed to the noise floor, propagation characterization, modeling of communication link of side-channel signals, and derivation of capacity bounds of the EM side-channel.


Alenka Zajic

Associate Professor
Georgia Institute of Technology

Alenka Zajic is an Associate Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She has received the B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from the University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia, in 2001 and 2003, respectively, and the Ph.D. degree in electrical and computer engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, in 2008. Before joining Georgia Tech, Dr. Zajic was a post-doctoral fellow in the Naval Research Laboratory and visiting faculty in the School of Computer Science at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Zajic’s research interests span areas of electromagnetics, wireless communications, and computer engineering. Her research is focused on studying propagation and enabling communication in challenging environments such as vehicle-to-vehicle wireless radio communications, underwater acoustic communications, and inside a processor chip.

Dr. Zajic was the recipient of the 2017 NSF CAREER Award, 2012 Neal Shepherd Memorial Best Propagation Paper Award, the Best Student Paper Award at the IEEE International Conference on Communications and Electronics 2014, the Best Paper Award at the International Conference on Telecommunications 2008, the Best Student Paper Award at the 2007 Wireless Communications and Networking Conference, and the Dan Noble Fellowship in 2004, which was awarded by Motorola Inc. and the IEEE Vehicular Technology Society for quality impact in the area of vehicular technology. Currently, she is an editor for IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications.