[PAST EVENT] Dachuan Liu, Computer Science - Dissertation Proposal

December 8, 2015
2:30pm - 4:30pm
McGlothlin-Street Hall, Room 002
251 Jamestown Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
With the advancements in mobile technology, smartphones have become ubiquitous in people's daily lives and have greatly facilitated users in many aspects. For a smartphone user, power saving and privacy protection are two important issues that matter and draw serious attentions from research communities. In this proposal, we present our studies on some specific issues of power saving and privacy protection on a smartphone.

IEEE 802.11 Power Save Mode (PSM) cannot bring expected benefits when multiple PSM mobile devices associate to a single Access Point (AP). In this proposal, we first prove that the optimization of energy saving for multiple PSM clients under constraint is an NP-Complete problem. Then, we propose a solution called HPSM (Harmonious Power Saving Mechanism) to handle the contention problem. HPSM classifies a PSM client as poor or rich in terms of link resource consumption, and favors the former to save power when PSM transmission contention occurs.

Traditional user authentication methods using passcode or finger movement on smartphones are vulnerable to shoulder surfing attack, smudge attack, and keylogger attack. Eye tracking technique can reduce the risk of suffering those attacks effectively because no hand input is required. We propose a new eye tracking authentication method that utilizes the smartphone's front camera to capture a user's eye movement trajectories as the input of user authentication. We develop a prototype and evaluate its effectiveness on an Android smartphone.

Users are not aware about how apps collect location and how serious the potential risk is. They can hardly notice a location access, especially when the location access happens in background. In the future work, we plan to investigate the privacy issue incurred by location access in background. We will first characterize such a location access behavior by examining a large number of popular apps collected from the Google app market. Then, we will demonstrate that this location access behavior can be leveraged to infer a user's Point of Interest (PoI), and further analyze the correlation between the access behavior and the security threat. Finally, we will provide a protection scheme to alleviate the risk of such privacy leakage.

Dachuan Liu is a Ph.D. candidate in the Deparment of Computer Science at William & Mary. He is working under the supervision of Dr. Haining Wang in the fields of energy efficiency, user authentication and location privacy protection on smartphone. Dachuan Liu received his B.S. in Computer Science from Sichuan University, China in 2005 and M.S. in Computer Science from Sichuan University, China in 2008.