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Physical Layer Covert Communication

PUBLISHED IN January 2024



Physical Layer Covert Communication in B5G Wireless Networks—its Research, Applications, and Challenges


Y. Jiang, L. Wang, H.-H. Chen, and X. Shen


Physical layer covert communication is a crucial secure communication technology that enables a transmitter to convey information covertly to a recipient without being detected by adversaries. Unlike typical cryptography and physical layer security systems that concentrate on protecting the sent signal content, covert communications seek to conceal the existence of legitimate transmission. Thus, with beyond fifth-generation (B5G) wireless communications, covert communications can operate in tandem or as a supplement to conventional security techniques. We provide an extensive overview of the basic theories and several strategies in physical layer covert communications in this article. In particular, we go into great detail about the basic theories of physical layer covert communications, such as channel models, codes, secret keys, and covertness metrics, as well as various covert schemes in progressively more complicated scenarios, such as covert communications in single-antenna and multiantenna three-node systems and covert communications in jammer- and relay-aided systems. In addition, we identify the challenges and future directions for research on covert communications in B5G wireless networks.

View this article on IEEE Xplore