Decomposed and Distributed Modulation to Achieve Secure Transmission

Zhao Li, Siwei Le, Jie Chen, Kang G. Shin, Jia Liu, Zheng Yan, Riku Jäntti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


With the rapid deployment and wide use of mobile services and applications, more and more sensitive user information is being transmitted wirelessly. Due to the broadcast nature of wireless transmissions, they are exposed to all surrounding entities and thus vulnerable to eavesdropping. To counter this vulnerability, we propose a new physical-layer secure transmission scheme, called DDM-Sec, based on decomposed and distributed modulation (DDM). We show that a high-order modulation can be decomposed into multiple quadrature phase shift keying (QPSK) modulations, each of which can be further represented by two mutually orthogonal binary phase shift keying (BPSK) modulations. Therefore, traditional modulation can be realized by two cooperative transmitters (Txs), each generating a BPSK signal, in a distributed manner. The legitimate receiver (Rx) can decode the desired/intended information from the mixed two received BPSK signals while preventing the eavesdropper from accessing the legitimate user's information. DDM-Sec can effectively exploit the randomness of wireless channels to secure data transmission, enrich the spatial signatures of the legitimate user's transmission by employing two cooperative Txs, and then distribute the user's information to two transmissions so that none of the decomposed signals alone carry the legitimate user's full information. Moreover, due to random deployment of the two Txs and Rx, delay difference of the two transmissions is introduced. This can be further utilized to make eavesdropping difficult. Our theoretical analysis and simulation have shown that DDM-Sec can effectively prevent the eavesdropping, and hence guarantee the secrecy of the legitimate user's data transmission.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalIEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Apr 2024
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Physical-layer security
  • modulation
  • distributed transmission
  • secure communication


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