The increasing complexity and low-power constraints of current Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) require efficient methodologies for network simulation and embedded software performance analysis of nodes. In addition, security is also a very important feature that has to be addressed in most WSNs, since they may work with sensitive data and operate in hostile unattended environments. In this paper, a methodology for security analysis of Wireless Sensor Networks is presented. The methodology allows designing attack-aware embedded software/firmware or attack countermeasures to provide security in WSNs. The proposed methodology includes attacker modeling and attack simulation with performance analysis (node’s software execution time and power consumption estimation). After an analysis of different WSN attack types, an attacker model is proposed. This model defines three different types of attackers that can emulate most WSN attacks. In addition, this paper presents a virtual platform that is able to model the node hardware, embedded software and basic wireless channel features. This virtual simulation analyzes the embedded software behavior and node power consumption while it takes into account the network deployment and topology. Additionally, this simulator integrates the previously mentioned attacker model. Thus, the impact of attacks on power consumption and software behavior/execution-time can be analyzed. This provides developers with essential information about the effects that one or multiple attacks could have on the network, helping them to develop more secure WSN systems. This WSN attack simulator is an essential element of the attack-aware embedded software development methodology that is also introduced in this work.
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