On-Body Device Clustering for Security Preserving in Internet of Things

Bingxian Lu, Lei Wang, Wei Wang*, Keping Yu*, Sahil Garg, Md Jalil Piran*, Atif Alamri

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The ability to detect which wireless devices are belonging to the same person from Wi-Fi access point (AP) enables many potential Internet-of-Things (IoT) applications, including continuous authentication and user-oriented devices isolation. The existing cryptographic-based solutions are not suitable for IoT devices with limited power and computing capabilities. The development of electronics and chip technology makes it possible to deploy machine learning (ML) algorithms on APs. In this article, we propose an on-body device clustering (OBDC) scheme. First, the OBDC extracts the trajectory and gait patterns from wireless signals when the user is moving. Second, it utilizes a hierarchical clustering algorithm to measure the similarity of wireless signal patterns between devices. Finally, if the devices are clustered into the same cluster, they are considered to be carried by the same person. Our real-world experimental results show that the devices from about 90% of users can be clustered correctly, while maintaining the devices from only 0.7% of users may be clustered into the same cluster with others' devices incorrectly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2852-2863
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Internet of Things Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Feb 15
Externally publishedYes


  • Clustering
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • machine learning (ML)
  • security

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Information Systems
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications


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