The MoSAIC (Mobile System Availability Integrity and Confidentiality) project officially started in September 2004. Its goal is to explore dependability issues of mobile applications at the middleware level. The project is partially financed through the French initiative for research in security and informatics (ACI S&I).

Summary of the project

The MoSAIC project is studying new fault tolerance and security mechanisms for mobile wireless devices in ambiant intelligence applications. We focus on sparse self-organized networks, using mostly one-hop wireless communication.

The first objective is to define an automatic data back-up and recovery service based on mutual cooperation between mobile devices with no prior trust relationships. Such a service aims to ensure continuous availability of critical data managed by mobile devices that are particularly prone to energy depletion, physical damage, loss or theft. The basic idea is to allow a mobile device to exploit accessible peer devices to manage backups of its critical data. The implementation of such a service by cooperation between devices with no prior trust relationship is far from trivial since new threats are introduced: (a) selfish devices may refuse to cooperate, (b) backup repository devices may themselves fail or attack the confidentiality or integrity of the backup data; (c) rogue devices may seek to deny service to peer devices by flooding them with fake backup requests; etc.

Dealing with these threats is the second objective of the project. We are studying mechanisms for managing trust in cooperative services between mutually suspicious devices. Of particular interest are mechanisms based on reputation (for a priori confidence-rating and a posteriori accountability) and rewards (for cooperation incitation). In the sparse ephemeral networks of devices considered, these mechanisms can rely neither on accessibility to trusted third parties nor on connectivity of a majority of the considered population of devices. Self-carried reputation and rewards are therefore of prime interest.

There are three partners in the project:

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