Securing emergent behaviour in swarm robotics

Liqun Chen, Siaw-Lynn Ng

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Swarm robotics is the study of how a large number of relatively simple
robots can be designed so that a desired collective behaviour emerges
from the local interactions among robots and between the robots and
their environment. While many aspects of a swarm may be modelled as
various types of ad hoc networks, and accordingly many aspects of
security of the swarm may be achieved by conventional means, here we
will focus on swarm emergent behaviour as something that most
distinguishes swarm robotics from ad hoc networks. We discuss the
challenges emergent behaviour poses on communications security, and by
classifying a swarm by types of robots, types of communication
channels, and types of adversaries, we examine what classes may be
secured by traditional methods and focus on aspects that are most
relevant to allowing emergent behaviour. We will examine how this can
be secured by ensuring that communication is secure. We propose a
simple solution using hash chains, and by modelling swarm
communications using a series of random graphs, we show that this
allows us to identify rogue robots with a high probability.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103047
JournalJournal of Information Security and Applications
Early online date15 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

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