2023-05901 - PhD Position F/M Remote attestation for Internet-of-Things swarms

Contract type : Fixed-term contract

Level of qualifications required : Graduate degree or equivalent

Fonction : PhD Position


This PhD position is in the context of the Horizon Europe project OpenSwarm, a 40-month research and innovation project coordinated by INRIA Paris and funded by the European Commission. The project aims at developing novel systems of collaborative smart nodes able to interpret the data they generate, and to collaborate in a decentralized manner to communicate efficiently, even in the context of mobility. The technology developed will be validated through 5 use cases in different environments, like agriculture, industry and maritime transport. The project gathers 8 other partners, prestigious universities and industrials in Europe.


In a swarm of 1,000 nodes, how can we guarantee that each node can be trusted?

Remote attestation procedures determine whether parties involved can establish a level of trustworthiness [1]. They enable remote detection of a compromise of a peer through the execution of a challenge-response protocol. You will contribute to the OpenSwarm project by working on the answer to the research question above. You will design, implement and validate techniques for remote attestation, that are scalable to large Internet-of-Things swarms. The open challenge is to make the existing techniques [2,3] scalable, yet practical and secure for Internet-of-Things swarms considered in the scope of the OpenSwarm project.

[1] Birkholz et al. Remote Attestation procedures Architecture. Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). RFC 9334.

[2] Ambrosin et al. Collective Remote Attestation at the Internet of Things Scale: State-of-the-Art and Future Challenges. IEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials, Vol. 22, No. 4, 2020.

[3] Dushku et al. SARA: Secure Asynchronous Remote Attestation for IoT Systems. IEEE Transactions On Information Forensics and Security, Vol. 15, 2020.


Main activities

You will follow closely the ongoing standardization activities at the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). You will  adapt the state-of-the-art security and attestation protocols standardized by the IETF to Internet-of-Things use cases by minimizing the number of messages and round trips needed to complete the attestation procedure. You will also work on the firmware aspects, developing the prototypes of the protocols you propose as part of your research.


  • good “hard” skills
    • some embedded programming experience (programming micro-controllers)
    • “computer” programming skills (ideally Python)
    • familiarity with crypto protocols and networking
    • some understanding of software quality and project management tools (e.g. Git, GitHub, Travis-CI, Jenkins)
  • good “soft” skills
    • we are looking for the “technical leader” type. If you have participated in open-source projects, have lead a software development team, tell us about it!
    • ideally, some open-source project experience, including source code and project management tools (Git, GitHub, Travis-CI, etc)
  • languages
    • excellent level of English is important
    • speaking French is a plus

Benefits package

  • Subsidized meals
  • Partial reimbursement of public transport costs
  • Leave: 7 weeks of annual leave + 10 extra days off due to RTT (statutory reduction in working hours) + possibility of exceptional leave (sick children, moving home, etc.)
  • Possibility of teleworking and flexible organization of working hours
  • Professional equipment available (videoconferencing, loan of computer equipment, etc.)
  • Social, cultural and sports events and activities
  • Access to vocational training