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Two-Hop Secure Communication Using an Untrusted Relay

DOI: 10.1155/2009/305146

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We consider a source-destination pair that can only communicate through an untrusted intermediate relay node. The intermediate node is willing to employ a designated relaying scheme to facilitate reliable communication between the source and the destination. Yet, the information it relays needs to be kept secret from it. In this two-hop communication scenario, where the use of the untrusted relay node is essential, we find that a positive secrecy rate is achievable. The center piece of the achievability scheme is the help provided by either the destination node with transmission capability, or an external “good samaritan” node. In either case, the helper performs cooperative jamming that confuses the eavesdropping relay and disables it from being able to decipher what it is relaying. We next derive an upper bound on the secrecy rate for this system. We observe that the gap between the upper bound and the achievable rate vanishes as the power of the relay node goes to infinity. Overall, the paper presents a case for intentional interference, that is, cooperative jamming, as an enabler for secure communication.


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