Special Issue "Security Threats and Countermeasures in Cyber-Physical Systems"

A special issue of Journal of Sensor and Actuator Networks (ISSN 2224-2708).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 September 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Paul Watters
Guest Editor
Professor in Cyber Security, La Trobe University, Australia
Interests: Examining the links between film piracy and the proliferation of child abuse material online; AI and penetration testing; cybercrime and cyber terrorism; online threats and social harms; malware and ransomware; API security; identity thefts; scams and phishing.
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Dr. Gregory Epiphaniou
Guest Editor
Associate Professor in Security Engineering, WMG, University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL, UK
Interests: wireless sensor networks; cyber defense; crypto-key generation; exploiting the time-domain physical attributes of V-V channels
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Prof. Pedro Pinto
Guest Editor
Instituto Politécnico de Viana do Castelo, 4900-347 Viana do Castelo, ISMAI, and INESC TEC, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal
Interests: computer networks and systems security, wireless and mobile networks
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Dr. Mohammad Hammoudeh

Guest Editor
School of Computing, Math and Digital Technology, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester M15 6BH, UK
Interests: wireless sensor networks; Internet of things; wireless ad hoc communications; mobile communications; network security; sensor/actuator networks; cyber–physical systems
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Wireless, sensor and actuator technologies are often central to sensing- or communication-critical systems. The last two decades have witnessed a revolution in the design of sensors and actuators that have the capacity to gather, analyse and communicate data wirelessly to drive intelligent actions in the physical world. Such Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) adds another integration and coordination dimension between the physical and digital worlds. This digital transformation covers manufacturing, critical care, public health, supply chain and various types of smart connected systems. For instance, the smart city concept has gained advantage from new sensing technologies, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence, cloud computing, big data, smart controllers and adaptive robotics for increasing productivity, fostering industrial growth and shifting economics.

CPS, though still in its infancy, is a fast-moving field with limitless potential. In order to take advantage of what wireless sensor and actuator networks can offer to CPS, many technical challenges have to be overcome before that potential can be achieved. When security is overlooked, CPS can potentially pose serious risks for all stakeholders. There are a large number of potential vulnerabilities and methodologies that are specific to CPS where classical security measures are ineffective. Security advancements have not kept pace with emerging threats to CPS. Security threats targeting the sensing and prediction capabilities of CPS and corresponding countermeasures are an under investigated area in the literature. For example, limited attempts have been made to compact malicious data injection attacks in sensors and adversarial machine learning. Failure to consider such threats and adversarial models may leads to exploitable system designs that could have disastrous consequences.

This Special Issue is dedicated to publishing cutting-edge research focused on addressing the various fundamental technical open security challenges related to CPS or IoT. It particularly focuses on future sensor and actuator technologies in the context of smart cities, intelligent transport and healthcare. It also solicits contributions on secure communication technologies and protocols for artificial intelligence-enabled systems.

Topics of interest include the following:

  1. Secure design and implementation of methodologies of CPS and IoT systems;
  2. Secure communication protocols for machines, actuators, sensors and control systems;
  3. Counter measures to emerging threats to CPS and IoT;
  4. Multi-sensor data fusion to counter sensor data injection attacks;
  5. Predictive data analytics for threat detection in CPS and IoT systems;
  6. Security challenges in SCADA systems;
  7. Security challenges in smart environments;
  8. Secure middleware, frameworks and services for CPS and IoT networks;
  9. Communication security and privacy for IoT and CPS systems;
  10. Artificial intelligence and machine learning for smart CPS and IoT security;
  11. Surveys on security threats and countermeasures in IoT and CPS;
  12. Security in Tactile Internet;
  13. Blockchain applications to CPS and IoT.

Prof. Paul Watters
Dr. Gregory Epiphaniou
Prof. Pedro Pinto
Dr. Mohammad Hammoudeh
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Sensor and Actuator Networks is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • security
  • threats
  • vulnerabilities
  • cyber-physical systems
  • Internet of Things
  • industrial IoT
  • smart environments

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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