Blockchain and PUF-based secure key establishment protocol for cross-domain digital twins in industrial Internet of Things architecture

Khalid Mahmood, Salman Shamshad, Muhammad Asad Saleem, Rupak Kharel, Ashok Kumar Das, Sachin Shetty, Joel J.P.C. Rodrigues

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Introduction: The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is a technology that connects devices to collect data and conduct in-depth analysis to provide value-added services to industries. The integration of the physical and digital domains is crucial for unlocking the full potential of the IIoT, and digital twins can facilitate this integration by providing a virtual representation of real-world entities. 

Objectives: By combining digital twins with the IIoT, industries can simulate, predict, and control physical behaviors, enabling them to achieve broader value and support industry 4.0 and 5.0. Constituents of cooperative IIoT domains tend to interact and collaborate during their complicated operations. 

Methods: To secure such interaction and collaborations, we introduce a blockchain-based cross-domain authentication protocol for IIoT. The blockchain maintains only each domain's dynamic accumulator, which accumulates crucial materials derived from devices, decreasing the overhead. In addition, we use the on-chain accumulator to effectively validate the unlinkable identities of cross-domain IIoT devices. 

Results: The implementation of the concept reveals the fact that our protocol is efficient and reliable. This efficiency and reliability of our protocol is also substantiated through comparison with state-of-the-art literature. In contrast to related protocols, our protocol exhibits a minimum 22.67% increase in computation cost efficiency and a 16.35% rise in communication cost efficiency. 

Conclusion: The developed protocol guarantees data transfer security across the domain and thwarts IoT devices from potential physical attacks. Additionally, in order to protect privacy, anonymity and unlinkability are also guaranteed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Advanced Research
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 20 Sep 2023
Externally publishedYes

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