Neighbor-Based Malicious Node Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks


The primary function of wireless sensor networks is to gather sensor data from the monitored area. Due to faults or malicious nodes, however, the sensor data collected or reported might be wrong. Hence it is important to detect events in the presence of wrong sensor readings and misleading reports. In this paper, we present a neighbor-based malicious node detection scheme for wireless sensor networks. Malicious nodes are modeled as faulty nodes behaving intelligently to lead to an incorrect decision or energy depletion without being easily detected. Each sensor node makes a decision on the fault status of itself and its neighboring nodes based on the sensor readings. Most erroneous readings due to transient faults are corrected by filtering, while nodes with permanent faults are removed using confidence-level evaluation, to improve malicious node detection rate and event detection accuracy. Each node maintains confidence levels of itself and its neighbors, indicating the track records in reporting past events correctly. Computer simulation shows that most of the malicious nodes reporting against their own readings are correctly detected unless they behave similar to the normal nodes. As a result, high event detection accuracy is also maintained while achieving low false alarm rate.

Share and Cite:

S. Yim and Y. Choi, "Neighbor-Based Malicious Node Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks," Wireless Sensor Network, Vol. 4 No. 9, 2012, pp. 219-225. doi: 10.4236/wsn.2012.49032.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] M. Yu, H. Mokhtar and M. Merabti, “Fault Management in Wireless Sensor Networks,” IEEE Wireless Communications, Vol. 14, No. 6, 2007, pp. 13-19. doi:10.1109/MWC.2007.4407222
[2] H. S. Hu and G. H. Qin, “Fault Management Frameworks in Wireless Sensor Networks,” 4th International Conference Intelligent Computation Technology and Automation, Shenzhen, 28-29 March 2011, pp. 1093-1096. doi:10.1109/ICICTA.2011.559
[3] C.-R. Li and C.-K. Liang, “A Fault-Folerant Event Boundary Detection Algorithm in Sensor Networks,” Information Networking: Towards Ubiquitous Networking and Services, Vol. 5200, 2008, pp. 406-414. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-89524-4_41
[4] X. H. Xu, B. Zhou and J. Wan, “Tree Topology Based Fault Diagnosis in Wireless Sensor Networks,” International Conference on Wireless Networks and Information Systems, Shanghai, 28-29 December 2009, pp. 65-69.
[5] M. H. Lee and Y.-H. Choi, “Fault Detection of Wireless Sensor Networks,” Computer Communications, Vol. 31, No. 14, 2008, pp. 3469-3475. doi:10.1016/j.comcom.2008.06.014
[6] S. Rajasegarar, C. Leckie and M. Palaniswami, “Anomaly Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks,” IEEE Wireless Communications, Vol. 15, No. 4, August 2008, pp. 34-40. doi:10.1109/MWC.2008.4599219
[7] D. I. Curiac, O. Banias, F. Dragan, C. Volosencu and O. Dranga, “Malicious Node Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks Using an Autoregression Technique,” 3rd International Conference on Networking and Services, Athens, 19-25 June 2007, p. 83.
[8] W. Junior, T. Figueiredo, H. Wong and A. Loureiro, “Malicious Node Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks,” 18th International Parallel and Distributed Processing Symposium, 26-30 April 2004, New Mexico, p. 24.
[9] X.-Y. Xiao, W.-C. Peng, C.-C. Hung and W.-C. Lee, “Using Sensor Ranks for In-Network Detection of Faulty Readings in Wireless Sensor Networks,” International Workshop Data Engineering for Wireless and Mobile Access, Beijing, 10 June 2007, pp. 1-8. doi:10.1145/1254850.1254852
[10] I. M. Atakli, H. Hu, Y. Chen, W.-S. Ku and Z. Su, “Malicious Node Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks Using Weighted Trust Evaluation,” Proceedings of Spring Simulation Multi-Conference, Ottawa, 14-17 April 2008, pp. 836-843.
[11] X. Chen, K. Makki, K. Yen, and N. Pissinou, “Sensor Network Security: A Survey,” IEEE Communication Surveys & Tutorials, Vol. 11, No. 2, 2009, pp. 52-73. doi:10.1109/SURV.2009.090205
[12] L. Ju, H. Li, Y. Liu, W. Xue, K. Li and Z. Chi, “An Improved Detection Scheme Based on Weighted Trust Evaluation for Wireless Sensor Networks,” Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Ubiquitous Information Technology and Applications, Sanya, 16-18 December 2010, pp. 1-6.
[13] M. Momani and S. Challa, “Survey of Trust Models in Different Network Domain,” International Journal Ad Hoc, Sensor & Ubiquitous Computing, Vol. 1, No. 3, 2010, pp. 1-19.
[14] M. Momani, S. Challa and R. Alhmouz, “Can We Trust Trusted Nodes in Wireless Sensor Networks?” International Conference Computer and Communication Engineering, Kuala Lumpur, 13-15 May 2008, pp. 1227-1232.

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.