VerLoc: Verifiable Localization in Decentralized Systems

05/25/2021 ∙ by Katharina Kohls, et al. ∙ 0

This paper tackles the challenge of reliably determining the geo-location of nodes in decentralized networks, considering adversarial settings and without depending on any trusted landmarks. In particular, we consider active adversaries that control a subset of nodes, announce false locations and strategically manipulate measurements. To address this problem we propose, implement and evaluate VerLoc, a system that allows verifying the claimed geo-locations of network nodes in a fully decentralized manner. VerLoc securely schedules roundtrip time (RTT) measurements between randomly chosen pairs of nodes. Trilateration is then applied to the set of measurements to verify claimed geo-locations. We evaluate VerLoc both with simulations and in the wild using a prototype implementation integrated in the Nym network (currently run by thousands of nodes). We find that VerLoc can localize nodes in the wild with a median error of 60km, and that in attack simulations it is capable of detecting and filtering out adversarial timing manipulations for network setups with up to 20



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