On non-cooperative location privacy: A game-theoretic analysis

Julien Freudiger, Mohammad Hossein Manshaei, Jean Pierre Hubaux, David C. Parkes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

131 Scopus citations

Abstract

In mobile networks, authentication is a required primitive for the majority of security protocols. However, an adversary can track the location of mobile nodes by monitoring pseudonyms used for authentication. A frequently proposed solution to protect location privacy suggests that mobile nodes collectively change their pseudonyms in regions called mix zones. Because this approach is costly, self-interested mobile nodes might decide not to cooperate and could thus jeopardize the achievable location privacy. In this paper, we analyze the non-cooperative behavior of mobile nodes by using a game-theoretic model, where each player aims at maximizing its location privacy at a minimum cost. We first analyze the Nash equilibria in n-player complete information games. Because mobile nodes in a privacy-sensitive system do not know their opponents' payoffs, we then consider incomplete information games. We establish that symmetric Bayesian-Nash equilibria exist with simple threshold strategies in n-player games and derive the equilibrium strategies. By means of numerical results, we show that mobile nodes become selfish when the cost of changing pseudonyms is small, whereas they cooperate more when the cost of changing pseudonyms increases. Finally, we design a protocol - the PseudoGame protocol - based on the results of our analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCCS'09 - Proceedings of the 16th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security
Pages324-337
Number of pages14
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event16th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, CCS'09 - Chicago, IL, United States
Duration: Nov 9 2009Nov 13 2009

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security
ISSN (Print)1543-7221

Conference

Conference16th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, CCS'09
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityChicago, IL
Period11/9/0911/13/09

Keywords

  • Game theory
  • Location privacy
  • Mobile networks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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