Project: EM Side-Channel Analysis for Digital Forensics

Unintentional electromagnetic (EM) emissions from computing devices are a well known source of side-channel information leakage. There’s a significant number of published work related to EM side-channel attacks focusing on various aspects. Verifying firmware running on devices, monitoring program activities for potential malfunctions, eavesdropping on computers, attacking cryptographic operations to recover keys are some of the examples.

tempest-hackaday-image
Image Source: https://hackaday.com/2015/10/19/tempest-a-tin-foil-hat-for-your-electronics-and-their-secrets/

Digital forensics is a field where digital evidences are collected from computing devices in order to support legal investigations. With the emergence of Internet of Things (IoT), more and more small, low-cost computing devices are being ended-up in crime scenes which can contain potential case-advancing digital evidences. In this project work, we are exploring how we can utilize EM emissions from Internet of Things (IoT) for the purpose of assisting digital forensics investigations. The advantage of the EM side-channel analysis in digital forensics context is the non-invasive nature of the the attack. It is important for digital forensic evidence collection activities to make sure that the devices being investigated does not get altered in any way.

Project: An Adaptive Sensor Actuator System for Elephant Tracking (ASSET)

Human-Elephant conflict is an ongoing challenge in various parts of Sri Lanka. The conflict results in deaths to both humans and elephant every year while causing damages to crops and houses in rural areas. The project called Adaptive Sensor Actuator System for Elephant Tracking (ASSET) was started as a collaboration between University of Uppsala, Sweden and University of Colombo School of Computing (UCSC), Sri Lanka to develop technologies that can be used to assist the mitigation of the conflict.

elephants

While I was working in Sustainable Computing Research (SCoRe) group in UCSC, I contributed to the project from 2014 to 2017. The project had multiple approaches to address human-elephant conflict. Among them, I contributed to two aspects. The first is using infrasonic emissions of wild elephants as a way to detect and localize them near human habitats. The goal was to provide early warnings to rural villagers about approaching elephants. The second approach was to build a smart electric fence which can detect breakages and provide information to the maintainers of the system. As the existing electric fences with breakage detection were too expensive to be deployed in the Sri Lankan context, our smart electric fence was designed to be cost effective.

The publications which I co-authored related to this project are as follows.

  1. Namal Jayasuriya, Tharindu Ranathunga, Kasun Gunawardana, Chamath Silva, Prabash Kumarasinghe, Asanka Sayakkara, Chamath Keppitiyagama, Kasun De Zoysa, Kasun Hewage and Thiemo Voigt. “Poster Abstract: Resource-Efficient Detection of Elephant Rumbles”. In Proceedings of the 15th ACM Conference on Embedded Networked Sensor Systems, SenSys 2017, Delft, The Netherlands.
  2. Asanka Sayakkara, Namal Jayasuriya, Tharindu Ranathunga, Chathura Suduwella, Nithila Vithanage, Chamath Keppitiyagama, Kasun De Zoysa, Kasun Hewage and Thiemo Voigt. “Eloc: Locating Wild Elephants using Low-cost Infrasonic Detectors”. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Distributed Computing on Sensor Systems, DCOSS 2017, Ottawa, Canada . (Best Paper Award)
  3. Namal Jayasuriya, Asanka Sayakkara, Chathura Suduwella, Chamath Keppitiyagama, Kasun De Zoysa, Kasun Hewage, and Thiemo Voigt. “Wire is not dead: Wired-backscatter Communication for Breakage Detection in Electric Fences”. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Next Generation Platforms for the Cyber-Physical Internet, NextMote 2017, Uppsala, Sweden .
  4. Asanka Sayakkara, Namal Jayasuriya, Tharindu Ranathunga, Chathura Suduwella, Nithila Vithanage, Chamath Keppitiyagama, Kasun De Zoysa, Kasun Hewage and Thiemo Voigt. “Poster: A Low-cost Elephant Localization System”. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Embedded Wireless Systems and Networks, EWSN 2017, Uppsala, Sweden .
  5. Poshitha Dabare, Chathura Suduwella, Asanka Sayakkara, Damitha Sandaruwan, Chamath Keppitiyagama, Kasun De Zoysa, Kasun Hewage, and Thiemo Voigt. “Listening to the Giants: Using Elephant Infra-Sound to Solve the Human-Elephant Conflict”. In Proceedings of the 6th Workshop on Real World Wireless Sensor Networks, RealWSN 2015, Seoul, South Korea.