Phantom Eavesdropping with Whitened RF Leakage

Chenglong Shao, Wonwoo Jang, Hoorin Park, Jekyung Sung, Yeongil Jung, Wonjun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Recent studies figure out that hidden eavesdroppers can be detected through RF (radio frequency) leakage from their local oscillators. Inspired by this finding, this letter presents Phantom Eavesdropping, an emerging wireless signal eavesdropping technique which renders hidden eavesdroppers immune to the RF leakage-based detection to further conceal their presence. At its heart is a dynamic alteration process regarding the local oscillator's oscillation frequency. As a result, the RF leakage from the local oscillator is whitened in the frequency domain and thus the corresponding eavesdropper becomes footprint-less. Practical experiment shows that Phantom Eavesdropping does not affect normal Wi-Fi eavesdropping while further rendering eavesdroppers transparent to eavesdropper detectors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8882327
Pages (from-to)232-235
Number of pages4
JournalIEEE Wireless Communications Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Feb

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Manuscript received August 24, 2019; revised October 10, 2019; accepted October 14, 2019. Date of publication October 24, 2019; date of current version February 7, 2020. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea grant funded by the Korea Government (MSIT) under Grant 2019R1A2C2088812. The associate editor coordinating the review of this article and approving it for publication was J. Harshan. (Corresponding author: Wonjun Lee.) The authors are with the Network and Security Research Laboratory, School of Cybersecurity, Korea University, Seoul 02841, South Korea (e-mail: Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/LWC.2019.2949316

Publisher Copyright:
© 2012 IEEE.


  • Eavesdropping
  • Fourier transform
  • RF leakage
  • Wi-Fi
  • frequency offset
  • local oscillator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Phantom Eavesdropping with Whitened RF Leakage'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this