Cross-layer jamming detection and mitigation in wireless broadcast networks

Jerry T. Chiang, Yih Chun Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Wireless communication systems are often susceptible to the jamming attack where adversaries attempt to overpower transmitted signals by injecting a high level of noise. Jamming is difficult to mitigate in broadcast networks because transmitting and receiving are inherently symmetric operations: A user that possesses the key to decode a transmission can also use that key to jam the transmission. We describe a code tree system that provides input to the physical layer and helps the physical layer circumvent jammers. In our system, the transmitter has more information than any proper subset of receivers. Each receiver cooperates with the transmitter to detect any jamming that affects that receiver. In the resulting system, each benign user is guaranteed to eliminate the impact of the attacker after some finite number of losses with arbitrarily high probability. We show that any system that relies on only using spreading code, and no other physical factors, to mitigate jamming must use at least j + 1 codes, where j is the number of jammers. We then propose an optimized scheme that is power-efficient: Each transmission is sent on at most 2j + 1 codes simultaneously. Finally, we demonstrate that our scheme approaches the best possible performance by performing an extensive analysis of the system using both event-driven ns-2 and chip-accurate MATLAB simulations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5575381
Pages (from-to)286-298
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2011


  • Broadcast networks
  • jamming mitigation
  • spread spectrum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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