Date of Award


Degree Type



Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Yu, Chansu

Subject Headings

Spread spectrum communications, Digital watermarking, Computer networks -- Security measures, Computer security


Security services and mechanisms in wireless networks have long been studied and developed. However, compared to upper network layers, physical layer security did not play a signicant role in the OSI security model. Thanks to the easier implementation and verication methods brought by the development of software dened radio (SDR) techniques, physical layer security mechanisms have recently drawn increasing interest from researchers. Digital watermarking is one of the popular security techniques that can fully utilize various exclusive characteristics of the physical layer. This thesis proposes a physical layer watermarking technique named Water-marked Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS) or WDSSS technique, which embeds authentication information into pseudonoise (PN) sequences of a DSSS system. The design and implementation of the WDSSS prototype system on the GNU Radio/USRP SDR platform is discussed, as well as two watermark embedding methods, the maximized minimum distance method and the sub-sequence method. Theoretical analysis and experimental results on the WDSSS prototype system are presented to evaluate the performances of both the content signal and the watermark signal. Results show that, for the 11-chip PN sequence, increasing articial chip errors has aquantitatively predictable impact on the content signal, requiring 2 dB higher signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) to maintain an acceptable packet error rate (PER) for one additional ipped chip. In terms of the watermark signal, the two embedding methods demonstrated individual advantages in either PER or throughput. The maximized minimum distance method outperforms the sub-sequence embedding method with a 3 dB lower SNR requirement, while the latter provides 400 more throughput than the former with adequate SNR