Defending wi-fi network discovery from time correlation tracking

Federico Cifuentes-Urtubey, Robin Kravets, Deepak Vasisht

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

Abstract

To prevent tracking a Wi-Fi device based on its MAC address, several operating systems have adopted MAC address randomization to conceal its factory-assigned address. This feature benefits users when their devices scan for networks, but a flaw arises when timing between transmissions stays consistent despite MAC address randomization in use. We present a defense mechanism, implemented with the Netlink library, against a time correlation attack for probe request packets on Wi-Fi devices. We show how adding random jitter to probe request transmissions renders a timing correlation attack infeasible to track devices during network discovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMobiSys 2022 - Proceedings of the 2022 20th Annual International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications and Services
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Pages591-592
Number of pages2
ISBN (Electronic)9781450391856
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 27 2022
Event20th ACM International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications and Services, MobiSys 2022 - Portland, United States
Duration: Jun 27 2022Jul 1 2022

Publication series

NameMobiSys 2022 - Proceedings of the 2022 20th Annual International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications and Services

Conference

Conference20th ACM International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications and Services, MobiSys 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPortland
Period6/27/227/1/22

Keywords

  • MAC address randomization
  • privacy
  • probe requests
  • wi-fi

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Computer Science Applications

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