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Transport Layer and Security Protocols for Ad Hoc Wireless Networks

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It's easy to create and maintain a transport layer for your network, but it's not so easy to keep that layer secure. This chapter will help you get started securing your transport layer.
This chapter is from the book

9.1 INTRODUCTION

The objectives of a transport layer protocol include the setting up of an end-to-end connection, end-to-end delivery of data packets, flow control, and congestion control. There exist simple, unreliable, and connection-less transport layer protocols such as UDP, and reliable, byte-stream-based, and connection-oriented transport layer protocols such as TCP for wired networks. These traditional wired transport layer protocols are not suitable for ad hoc wireless networks due to the inherent problems associated with the latter. The first half of this chapter discusses the issues and challenges in designing a transport layer protocol for ad hoc wireless networks, the reasons for performance degradation when TCP is employed in ad hoc wireless networks, and it also discusses some of the existing TCP extensions and other transport layer protocols for ad hoc wireless networks.

The previous chapters discussed various networking protocols for ad hoc wireless networks. However, almost all of them did not take into consideration one very important aspect of communication: security. Due to the unique characteristics of ad hoc wireless networks, which have been mentioned in the previous chapters, such networks are highly vulnerable to security attacks compared to wired networks or infrastructure-based wireless networks (such as cellular networks). Therefore, security protocols being used in the other networks (wired networks and infrastructure-based wireless networks) cannot be directly applied to ad hoc wireless networks. The second half of this chapter focuses on the security aspect of communication in ad hoc wireless networks. Some of the recently proposed protocols for achieving secure communication are discussed.

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