The fifth generation of cellular networks (5G) offers great potential for older technologies. Therefore allowing them to connect with big data, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and many others.
5G networks present a big opportunity for IoT devices due to their fast speed, low latency, and high access . Additionally, IoT allows the existence of a link between the physical world and virtual devices .
5G makes the world more and more connected and can connect about devices per square kilometer . It can also handle a high volume of data with high speed.
IoT devices that can profit from 5G technology are related to smart grids, smart and connected cities, the internet of battlefield and military things for instance .
Traditional IoT devices (connected to the cloud) have suffered from privacy and security issues  . This is because data access happens in a centralized way. That is when it comes to the storage and accessibility of data and transactions.
Blockchain technologies have a decentralized way of working hence provide a very solid and effective security system. Therefore countering this problem.
IoT devices have no computational power. Blockchains provide very strong network security for data integrity and 5 G allows for ultra-low latency.
The focus of this thesis is to design a framework that can merge these three technologies. Moreover taking into consideration the shortcomings and benefits of each.
Proof of work is one of the most powerful security consensus of blockchain technology. It will be thus the main focus on the security side of the framework. By modifying it, the identities and goals of the three technologies will fit better eventually.
Keywords꞉ 5G; Internet of Things (IoT) devices; Blockchain; Data integrity; Centralized; Decentralized; Low latency; Proof of work.
Chapter 1: Introduction.
1.1.1 Consensus mechanisms.
1.1.2 Decentralized infrastructures.
1.1.3 Types of Blockchain.
1.2 Problem Statement.
1.3 Aim and objectives.
Chapter 2꞉ Literature review.
2. Literature Review.
Chapter 3: Proposed framework.
CHAPTER 6: FUTURE WORKs.
|IoT||Internet of Things|
|IoMT||Internet of Medical Things|
|PoW||Proof of Work|
|PoS||Proof of Stake|
|PoSp||Proof of Space|
|Figure Number||Figure Title|
|Figure 1||Proposed Communication between Devices|
|Table Number||Table Title|
One of the oldest technologies which have revolutionized the way the internet works, from computer-based technologies to our daily and social work, is the Internet of Things (IoT). It particularly allows us to merge our daily life with the internet. IoT devices usually work hand in hand with cloud computing and which uses a central server to store and access data. However, this has led to multiple security and privacy problems .
The world of technology has been evolving and features have become more amazing over the years. Most of the improvements are related to the capacity increase, throughput, and coverage increase .
5G, compared to its predecessor, focuses on providing a more stable mobile broadband. Additionally, it supports massive machine type communication, and provides ultra-reliable and ultra-low latency communication .
Multiple researchers have tried to merge what is called blockchain technology and IoT , but now there is a new trend of trying to merge 5G and blockchain.
IoT devices can benefit from blockchain security and 5G speed but the merger can also have some drawbacks. The best of the three technologies seen by identifying these drawbacks.
Blockchain technology has resolved multiple security threats that have crippled cloud computing . However, this has come at a price. 5G and blockchain have huge potential when it comes to allowing the globalization of technology.
5G provides speed and blockchain will eventually provide the necessary security. Blockchain can bring stable tracking, traceability, and resolve security issues brought by 5G and the centralized way of working of traditional IoT devices .
The throughput of blockchain is related to the number of actions per unit of time made within a system. It is obvious that the number of IoT devices working in a network is usually huge. Therefore, this means that the number of actions may sometimes be immense.
The major drawbacks of the merger are related to throughput and consensus of work from blockchain technologies, in general, and specifically about Proof of Work (PoW) consensus.
This provides a big challenge because of the Real-time nature of many IoT applications. In addition, blockchain applications usually have low throughput . Therefore, it is imperative to resolve this problem.
Consensus of work: this project will adopt PoW as the consensus mechanism. It is one of the most popular mechanisms in this case . PoW requires a lot of computational and processing power which is another big challenge for IoT devices due to their restrictions in resources . So, when we modify the PoW it will better fit the computational power of each device in an IoT network.
Technological aspects of the three technologies to examine are as follows:
A new consensus mechanism related to the PoW will be developed since that the consensus mechanism is the very base of blockchain technologies . In blockchain, there exist multiple types of consensus protocols for example PBFT, Proof of Stake (PoS), and proof of elapsed time (PoET), but most of the existing applications use PoW due to its high integrity and security .
Bitcoin applications usually use PoW to ensure that the ledger does not suffer from unwanted and unauthorized changes. PoW usually works in the following way: A candidate block that wants to enter the ledger to make any transactions must pass the result of a highly difficult calculation using the hash value of the information or transaction plus a random nonce .
If the calculation does not meet a certain criterion,there will be a recalculation with a different nonce; this will be considered as a new try . In short, PoW requires a node or block (IoT device in the network) to try and solve a highly difficult computational problem. As a result validate a certain number of transactions and add them to the ledger or blockchain .
Note that each time there is a need for a new calculation, there is a computation of the hash values. The previous information in the blockchain before the try gives the calculation.. PoW works to protect transactions in Bitcoin applications; the randomness of each subsequent calculation brings a high level of security. The meaning of PoW calculation allows transactions that are included in the block to be virtually impossible to change by unauthorized blocks or devices . However, all these calculations have high computational power requirements.
IoT devices use a centralized way of working. More and more applications adopt blockchain technologies. This is because of the different threats over the years. This is because of their decentralized way of working. Moreover, they adapt them to fit their needs.
However, security is what is most desired. Therefore, the decentralized way of working and the security solution that comes with blockchain technologies will need to be integrated into 5G IoT devices.
The particular need in this project will chose the type of blockchain altogether. There will be three types of blockchain. The following shows the new framework and the quality of each of them:
In 5G networks, each type of blockchain is deployed differently for several reasons and has different outcomes to point out .
The analysis of the three different types of blockchain will determine the design of the framework. This is through the analysis of the different problem such as throughput, low latency, and security problems.
The different cells containing blockchain will design the framework. The blockchain includes nodes (IoT devices) which are separate.
Each cell will handle its own related transaction. The cell which possesses the least number of transactions or the one that is free sends or handles any demand or pending transaction. The central node (server-like device) will link the cells on each cell. Consequently, the nodes will deduce PoW.
In this thesis, it is important to develop and design in a way that can integrate 5G with blockchain for IoT devices. The framework will not ensure that blockchain can remove the security issues in the traditional IoT networks, but also ensure it resolves that the throughput and PoW problem.
Multiple problems pertaining to the merger of 5G, IoT, and blockchain technologies have to be resolved. This to bring out the best out of the three technologies. The thesis, the addresses the following problems:
The framework designed to merge IoT, blockchain and 5G will allow the following goals to be met꞉
The benefits presented by the framework are numerous. That is to say, they allow most technologies used over a network to have solid security and high accessibility.
In this research, the areas of the IoT, blockchain and 5G technologies are limited to their implementation in a network with potentially millions of devices. A literature review analyses in depth the previous work related to ????????????. The framework is then designed and compared in terms of efficiency in three different environments related to the three main technologies of 5G, IoT and blockchain.
In the remainder of this thesis, the following parts are presented꞉
Chapter Two will present a literature review of the previous works related to the three technologies mentioned above. The third chapter will present the proposed framework, first from a networking point of view and then from a security and blockchain point of view.
Chapter Four will present how the proposed framework fits into the three types of blockchains related to 5G. Lastly, Chapter Five will present the conclusion and Chapter Six will present the future work related to the merger of the three technologies.
Low latency and low throughput related to PoW are due to the fact there is a need for permission to access data within the blocks (shared ledger). A block must resolve a computational problem. This is on the basis of the previous data within all the previous blocks in the network. As a result, the bigger the number of devices or blocks the more complex and power-consuming the calculation will be.
For example, in a smart grid where there are millions of devices interacting with one another and there is a need for low latency, PoW will hinder the functions of smart grid devices because the millions of devices will need enough computational power to do the calculation and those which do not have it will fall behind and bring low latency in the delivery of services. To prevent this from occurring there is a need to modify the PoW consensus and the network itself accordingly.
Let take smart watches for example. One thousand smartwatches are the limit of one cell and these watches will be registered to the physical location. In this case, the nearest and available cell. So even if the owner of the watch moves far away from his cells and can still access 5G connectivity, then transactions will still be redirected to their original cell. Note that other devices are also needed to make a cell operational just enough to respect the need of the business and an MD will also be added.
Our framework modifies the PoW consensus; though not all the blocks will participate in the calculation (see point e).
A new device called an MD that is powerful enough to support 5G speed, will be added to each cell to measure the latency threshold and connect the different cells, allowing devices in and sending devices out to other cells.
It will also have firewall software to secure access to the cells. The figure below depicts how devices will communicate in the network as follows. For n+1 to access the resources of cell 2 it must pass through MD1 first, then MD2 and connect itself to the blocks, and vice versa.
Although connected, n+1 will be considered a stranger to the cell and will not participate in the computational calculation of the PoW. For the transactions it came for, it will need to resolve the problem with the help of MD1 and MD2 simultaneously.
IoT devices have revolutionized the internet and together with the web as we know it. Morever they have made people’s everyday lives easier in particular. Security is one of the major flaws that face IoT devices. For this reason, multiple effects can be carried based on the different layers of IoT device architecture (sensing layer, network layer, middle ware layer, application layer).
Blockchain is the solution now and in the future when it comes to securing IoT applications against adversaries. However, the merger of the two technologies presents difficulties that can affect the very purpose of IoT devices. The framework proposed in this work merges the two technologies and also adds 5G technology due to its speed and the number of devices it can connect all over the world.
The framework has different cells, From the network perspective, the framework has different cells. Those cells work independently and have their shared ledger together. Moreover a monitoring device that can be considered as a server will be placed in each cell. Therefore it will be the only point of communication between cells.
The monitoring device will ensure security at the middleware and application layer with the different security applications installed on it in particular (antiviruses, firewalls). From the Blockchain perspective, the monitoring device allows devices that require low latency to particularly work properly. As a result resolve the problem of low throughput and growing computational power melded to the PoW mechanism.
The monitoring device will be able to give direct access to the shared ledger to a device within a cell, if and only if it detects a delay significant enough to cause high latency. There will be no effect on the blocks and the computation in this situation. With 5G and its speed, the monitoring device’s response will eventually be swift enough to respond to the demands of different devices within the cell.
The cell part of the framework allows IoT devices to be free from the issues integral in the PoW mechanism. It also allows the devices to work quickly and be more reliable. The fact that each cell has its monitoring device allows the network to be more robust. Thus resistant to failures and device malfunctions.
In effect, even if a monitoring device fails, the cell can continue working without it; nevertheless, only the option to directly access the shared ledger will be impacted. IoT devices, 5G, and Blockchain for example are the solution for the future of any device connected to the internet. Therefore, when merged, the most important aspect is to not affect the originality of each of the three.
Placing servers in all the cells is not an easy thing to do particularly. This is in terms of money and cost-efficiency for instance. The servers are not cheap and also the software to ensure the security of each cell makes the cost to build a whole network extremely expensive.
In the future, the cell framework will be insured by the devices alone and no monitoring devices will be needed. IoT devices within a cell should be able to detect devices that present significant delays and allow them to access the shared ledger without resolving the PoW mathematical question. Security measures should be taken seriously in case any malicious node appears and wants to disrupt the cell.
With this future framework, there will not be any point of failure that can impact the network or cell, and if a device malfunctions, it can just be isolated and the other devices can continue the work in private and public and consortium blockchain can be applied to the framework at the preference of the network designer, instead of only having the choice of consortium Blockchain.
In the future, we will see IoT devices used globally in everyday life and those devices should be secure, fast, and intelligent. The security of the IoT devices can be ensured through technologies such as Blockchain and other security purpose technologies.
The speed part will be handled by the likes of 5G technologies.The intelligence part is more pertinent, especially for the edge devices at the sensing layer. Those devices, being the most vulnerable, should have a type of artificial intelligence robust enough to handle almost every situation.
Through semi-supervised learning, those devices can be trained for different situations.Consortium Blockchain is the 5G type of Blockchain that will be preferred in the future for the framework because of the known entities that ensure the security of mainly the monitoring devices (servers) in each cell, as only known devices in the network can access a cell if it comes from the outside.
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