Flexible Physical Layer Security for Joint Data and Pilots in Future Wireless Networks

Creative Commons License

Zegrar S. E., Furqan H. M., ARSLAN H.

IEEE Transactions on Communications, vol.70, no.4, pp.2635-2647, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 70 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/tcomm.2022.3151341
  • Journal Name: IEEE Transactions on Communications
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, PASCAL, Aerospace Database, Applied Science & Technology Source, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, Communication & Mass Media Index, Communication Abstracts, Compendex, Computer & Applied Sciences, INSPEC, Metadex, zbMATH, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.2635-2647
  • Keywords: Security, Channel estimation, Peak to average power ratio, Bit error rate, Transmitting antennas, Communication system security, Radio transmitters, Data security, pilot security, PHY security, minimum-phase all-pass decomposition, MIMO-OFDM
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


In this work, novel physical layer security (PLS) schemes are proposed for orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) to secure both data and pilots in multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems. The majority of previous studies focus on only securing the data without considering the security of the pilots used for channel estimation. However, the leakage of channel state information (CSI) from a legitimate node to an eavesdropper allows the latter to acquire knowledge about the channel of the legitimate nodes. To this end, we propose adaptive and flexible PLS algorithms which can 1) secure data, 2) secure pilots, and 3) jointly secure both data and pilots. Particularly, minimum-phase all-pass channel decomposition is exploited, where the proposed algorithms use the all-pass component to provide security without harming the performance of the legitimate user. In the analysis for data security, we evaluate the secrecy under correlated and uncorrelated eavesdropping channels via closed-form bit error rate (BER) formulas. For pilot security, we analyze the estimated channel's normalized mean squared error (NMSE) performance. The simulation results and theoretical analysis demonstrate that the proposed algorithms can effectively enhance the communication secrecy of the overall system.