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J. Lopez, A. Mana, P. Merino, and J. M. Troya, "The Role of Smartcards in Practial Information Security",
ERCIM News, vol. 49, pp. 38-40, 2002. More..


The transition from traditional commerce to electronic and mobile commerce is fostered by aspects like convenience, speed and ease of use. However, security issues remain unsolved. Smart cards open new possibilities for the development of security schemes and protocols that can provide security in applications such as electronic payments or software protection where traditional cryptographic tools are not useful. The GISUM group is involved in several research projects that make use of smart cards. Current applications include a secure electronic forms framework for government-citizen relations, electronic ticketing systems for GMS phones and Internet, a PDA-based digital signature environment, public transport, access control systems, software protection and banking applications. This report focuses on two recent projects: the eTicket electronic ticketing project (1FD97 1269 C02 02 (TAP)), a coordinated project with the Carlos III University of Madrid; and the Alcance project, consisting of the development of a secure electronic forms framework for secure Internet-based communication between citizens and the public administration (1FD97 0850 (TIC)).

PDF icon JavierLopez2002d.pdf (119.71 KB)
R. Roman, C. Alcaraz, and J. Lopez, "The Role of Wireless Sensor Networks in the Area of Critical Information Infrastructure",
Information Security Technical Report, vol. 12, no. 1, Elsevier, pp. 24-31, 2007. DOI More..


Critical Infrastructures, such as energy, banking, and transport, are an essential pillar to the well-being of the national and international economy, security and quality of life. These infrastructures are dependent on a spectrum of highly interconnected information infrastructures for their smooth, reliable and continuous operation. The field of protecting such Critical Information Infrastructures, or CIIP, faces numerous challenges, such as managing the secure interaction between peers, assuring the resilience and robustness of the overall system, and deploying warning and alert systems, amongst others. In this tapestry of CIIP, Wireless Sensor Networks can be used as an invaluable tool due to their intelligent distributed control capabilities, alongside with their capability to work under severe conditions. In this paper, we justify why Wireless Sensor Networks technology is suitable for providing security for these scenarios, describing both their advantages and research issues and their role in the overall scheme of protecting the Critical Information Infrastructures.

PDF icon Roman2007a.pdf (183.54 KB)
P. Najera, and J. Lopez, "Real-time Location and Inpatient Care Systems Based on Passive RFID",
Journal of Network and Computer Applications, vol. 34, Elsevier, pp. pp. 980-989, 2011. DOI (I.F.: 1.065)More..


RFID technology meets identification and tracking requirements in healthcare environments with potential to speed up and increase reliability of involved processes. Due to this, high expectations for this integration have emerged, but hospital and medical centers interested in adoption of RFID technology require prior knowledge on how to squeeze RFID capabilities, real expectations and current challenges. In this paper, we show our lab tested solutions in two specific healthcare scenarios. On the one hand, we analyze the case of a medical equipment tracking system for healthcare facilities enabling both real-time location and theft prevention. Worth-noting aspects such as possible EMI interferences, technology selection and management of RFID data from hospital information system are analyzed. Lab testing of system reliability based on passive UHF RFID is provided for this case. On the other hand, we analyze and provide a solution for care and control of patients in a hospital based on passive HF RFID with the result of a fully functional demonstrator. Our prototype squeezes RFID features in order to provide a backup data source from patient’s wristband. It also provides an offline working mode aiming to increase application reliability under network fail down and therefore, improving patient’s safety. Considerations regarding lessons learned and challenges faced are exposed.

Impact Factor: 1.065
Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Thomson Reuters, 2011)

PDF icon Najera2010.pdf (241.66 KB)
N. Nomikos, et al., "Relay Selection for Secure 5G Green Communications",
Telecommunication Systems , vol. 59, issue 1, Springer US, pp. 169-187, 05/2015. DOI (I.F.: 0.822)More..


In this article, we present relay selection policies in applications with secrecy requirements which are of interest in the fifth generation (5G) of wireless networks. More specifically, we provide a classification of relays based on their distinct communication attributes, such as processing, multiple antennas, storage, channel estimation, density and security level. In addition, we discuss the level of efficiency exhibited by each relay class, regarding their impact in delay-critical applications and green communications applications, while aiming at a specific security level at the physical layer. Then, relay selection policies are proposed taking into consideration the goals set by each application. Numerical evaluation of the proposed policies in terms of the average secrecy rate, average delay and power reduction show improved performance compared to other state-of-the-art solutions. 

Impact Factor: 0.822
Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Thomson Reuters, 2015)

J. E. Rubio, C. Alcaraz, and J. Lopez, "Recommender System for Privacy-Preserving Solutions in Smart Metering",
Pervasive and Mobile Computing, vol. 41, Pervasive and Mobile Computing, pp. 205-218, 10/2017. (I.F.: 2.974)More..


Nowadays, Smart Grid is envisaged to provide several benefits to both customers and grid operators. However, Smart Meters introduce many privacy issues if consumption data is analysed. In this paper we analyse the main techniques that address privacy when collecting electricity readings. In addition to privacy, it is equally important to preserve efficiency to carry on with monitoring operations, so further control requirements and communication protocols are also studied. Our aim is to provide guidance to installers who intend to integrate such mechanisms on the grid, presenting an expert system to recommend an appropriate deployment strategy.

Impact Factor: 2.974
Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Thomson Reuters, 2017)

PDF icon rubiorecommender17.pdf (461.99 KB)
C. Alcaraz, "Resilient Industrial Control Systems based on Multiple Redundancy",
International Journal of Critical Infrastructures (IJCIS), vol. 13, no. 2/3, Inderscience Publisher, pp. 278 - 295, 11/2017. DOI More..


The incessant search for cost-effective recovery solutions for structural controllability has led to one of the most challenging research areas within the field of critical infrastructure protection. The resilience of large heterogeneous distributions, like industrial control scenarios, is proving to be a complicated mission due to the inherent non-locality problems of structural controllability and its susceptibility to advanced threats. To address these issues, this paper proposes a new repair approach based on multiple redundant pathways and the lessons learnt from the work presented in [1]. From [1], we have adapted the local measures, to combine them with each of the five strategies of remote reconnection described in this paper. To validate the sustainability of the combined approaches, two practical case studies are presented here, showing that a local dependence on a brother driver node together with remote dependence is enough to reach optimal states in linear times.

C. Alcaraz, J. Lopez, and K-K. Raymond Choo, "Resilient Interconnection in Cyber-Physical Control Systems",
Computers & Security, vol. 71, Elsevier, pp. 2-14, 11/2017. DOI (I.F.: 2.650)More..


Secure interconnection between multiple cyber-physical systems has become a fundamental requirement in many critical infrastructures, where security may be centralized in a few nodes of the system. These nodes could, for example, have the mission of addressing the authorization services required for access in highlyrestricted remote substations. For this reason, the main aim of this paper is to unify all these features, together with the resilience measures so as to provide control at all times under a limited access in the field and avoid congestion. Concretely, we present here an optimal reachability-based restoration approach, capable of restoring the structural control in linear times taking into account: structural controllability, the supernode theory, the good practices of the IEC-62351 standard and the contextual conditions. For context management, a new attribute is specified to provide a more complete authorization service based on a practical policy, role and attribute-based access control (PBAC + RBAC + ABAC). To validate the approach, two case studies are also discussed under two strategic adversarial models.

Impact Factor: 2.650
Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Thomson Reuters, 2017)

PDF icon Alcaraz2017COSE.pdf (5.27 MB)
J. Lopez, J. E. Rubio, and C. Alcaraz, "A Resilient Architecture for the Smart Grid",
IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, vol. 14, issue 8, IEEE, pp. 3745-3753, 08/2019, 2018. DOI (I.F.: 7.377)More..


The Smart Grid offers many benefits due to the bidirectional communication between the users and the utility company, which makes it possible to perform a fine-grain consumption metering. This can be used for Demand Response purposes with the generation and delivery of electricity in real time. It is essential to rapidly anticipate high peaks of demand or potential attacks, so as to avoid power outages and denial of service, while effectively supplying consumption areas. In this paper, we propose a novel architecture where cloud computing resources are leveraged (and tested in practice) to enable, on the one hand, the consumption prediction through time series forecasting, as well as load balancing to uniformly distribute the demand over a set of available generators. On the other and, it also allows the detection of connectivity losses and intrusions within the control network by using controllability concepts.

Impact Factor: 7.377
Journal Citation Reports® Science Edition (Thomson Reuters, 2018)

PDF icon transactionInformaticsSG2018.pdf (609.25 KB)
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