A Game-Theoretic and Experimental Analysis of Energy-Depleting Underwater Jamming Attacks

Alberto Signori*, Federico Chiariotti, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele Zorzi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Security aspects in underwater wireless networks have not been widely investigated so far, despite the critical importance of the scenarios in which these networks can be employed. For example, an attack to a military underwater network for enemy targeting or identification can lead to serious consequences. Similarly, environmental monitoring applications, such as tsunami prevention, are also critical from a public safety point of view. In this article, we assess a scenario in which a malicious node tries to perform a jamming attack, degrading the communication quality of battery-powered underwater nodes. The legitimate transmitter may use packet-level coding to increase the chances of correctly delivering packets. Because of the energy limitation of the nodes, the jammer's objective is twofold: 1) disrupting the communication and 2) reducing the lifetime of the victim by making it send more redundancy. We model the jammer and the transmitter as players in a multistage game, deriving the optimal strategies. We evaluate the performance both in a model-based scenario and using real experimental data, and perform a sensitivity analysis to evaluate the performance of the strategies if the real channel model is different from the one they use.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9044362
JournalIEEE Internet of Things Journal
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)9793-9804
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


  • Block code
  • game theory
  • jamming
  • security in underwater networks
  • underwater acoustic networks


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