Send in your ideas. Deadline October 1, 2024
Theme fund: NGI0 Entrust
Start: 2023-06
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FPGA-based Radio Receiver for securing Wifi against hacking attacks

The proposed project aims to develop a cost-effective, small, and low-power wide band radio receiver device that automatically detects various malicious attacks on Wifi access points, such as Man in the Middle and Denial of Service attacks. The RA-Sentinel project is designed to protect your home WiFi from unwanted cyber threats. Think of it as a digital watchdog for your internet connection that barks when someone from the outside tries to break in. The device will enhance internet safety for ordinary users by monitoring any Wifi cell. It will consist of low-cost receive-only chips that digitizes 40 MHz of the Wifi radio spectrum at 2.4 GHz and extracts with the FPGA relevant properties from demodulated and decoded packets in real-time without storing them. These properties are fed into a neural network also implemented on an FPGA, which determines if the traffic is genuine or an attack. Only open source FPGA tools will be used.

Why does this actually matter to end users?

In today's interconnected world, we all rely on WiFi to stay in touch, work, learn, and relax. But like any bustling city square, the digital realm has its share of pickpockets, stalkers and other mischief-makers. RA-Sentinel introduces a simple, yet powerful solution to this modern challenge. Picture a silent, diligent guardian standing by your home's digital gateway, ensuring that you learn about unwanted intrusions into your Wifi network. This device monitors the airwaves, constantly ensuring that your online activities — be it video calls with loved ones, online shopping sprees, or binge-watching weekends — are undisturbed by hidden threats.

If anything unusual appears on the horizon, it's quick to sound the alarm, allowing you to take countermeasures and then continue your online journey with peace of mind. For the everyday individual, this translates to a more secure online experience without the need for technical expertise. It's about bringing the assurance of a safer internet directly to your living room, ensuring that each time you connect, you're protected by a vigilant digital ally.

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This project was funded through the NGI0 Entrust Fund, a fund established by NLnet with financial support from the European Commission's Next Generation Internet programme, under the aegis of DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology under grant agreement No 101069594.