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Department of Computer Science

Balancing security and privacy with data usefulness and efficiency in wireless sensor networks

Primary supervisor

Additional information

Contact admissions office

Other projects with the same supervisor


  • Competition Funded Project (Students Worldwide)

This research project is one of a number of projects at this institution. It is in competition for funding with one or more of these projects. Usually the project which receives the best applicant will be awarded the funding. Applications for this project are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full department and project details for further information.

Project description

A Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) refers to a collection of low-power
wireless devices connected through radio communication facilities. These
devices have limited processing speed, storage capacity, and communication
bandwidth. They can be deployed in a distributed environment sensing,
monitoring or collecting data, processing and communicating the data and
coordinating actions with other peers or nodes at a higher hierarchy in a
infrastructural setting. Such WSNs have a wide range of potential
applications including utilities, transportation system automation, and
patients? medical condition monitoring, etc. Some of these application
areas impose stringent privacy and security requirements on data
transmissions, processing and management.

Assuming reliable cryptographic techniques can be used to provide
communication security, it is not clear how data privacy could be
preserved in such a context. In addition, cryptographic techniques are
computationally expensive, and inappropriate use of these techniques could
lead to excessive computing power and energy consumption. The aim of this
Ph.D. project is to investigate and research efficient and cost-effective
measures to achieve security and preserve privacy in a WSN environment.

Person specification

For information


Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You must be capable of performing at a very high level.
  • You must have a self-driven interest in uncovering and solving unknown problems and be able to work hard and creatively without constant supervision.


Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You will have good time management.
  • You will possess determination (which is often more important than qualifications) although you'll need a good amount of both.


Applicants will be required to address the following.

  • Comment on your transcript/predicted degree marks, outlining both strong and weak points.
  • Discuss your final year Undergraduate project work - and if appropriate your MSc project work.
  • How well does your previous study prepare you for undertaking Postgraduate Research?
  • Why do you believe you are suitable for doing Postgraduate Research?