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Efficient implementation of elliptic curve cryptography in wireless sensors

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  • The deployment of cryptography in sensor networks is a challenging task, given the limited computational power and the resource-constrained nature of the sensoring devices. This paper presents the implementation of elliptic curve cryptography in the MICAz Mote, a popular sensor platform. We present optimization techniques for arithmetic in binary fields, including squaring, multiplication and modular reduction at two different security levels. Our implementation of field multiplication and modular reduction algorithms focuses on the reduction of memory accesses and appears as the fastest result for this platform. Finite field arithmetic was implemented in C and Assembly and elliptic curve arithmetic was implemented in Koblitz and generic binary curves. We illustrate the performance of our implementation with timings for key agreement and digital signature protocols. In particular, a key agreement can be computed in 0.40 seconds and a digital signature can be computed and verified in 1 second at the 163-bit security level. Our results strongly indicate that binary curves are the most efficient alternative for the implementation of elliptic curve cryptography in this platform.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 11-04; Secondary: 94A60.


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