The high data rates employed by wavelength division multiplexing transparent optical networks make them most suitable for today’s growing network traffic demands. However, their transparency imposes several vulnerabilities in network security, enabling malicious signals to propagate from the source to other parts of the network without losing their attacking capabilities. Furthermore, detecting, locating the source, and localizing the spreading of such physical-layer attacks is more difficult since monitoring must be performed in the optical domain. While most failure and attack management approaches focus on network recovery after a fault or an attack has already occurred, we suggest a novel safety strategy, proposing a prevention-oriented method to aid attack localization and source identification in the planning phase. In this paper, we propose attack-aware wavelength assignment that minimizes the worst-case potential propagation of in-band crosstalk jamming attacks. We define a new objective criterion for the wavelength assignment (WA) problem, called the propagating crosstalk attack radius (P-CAR), and develop heuristic algorithms aimed at minimizing both the P-CAR and the number of wavelengths used. Our aim is to achieve better protection, but without the need for extra resources. We compare our algorithms with existing WA approaches, illustrating their benefits with respect to transparent optical networks’ security, as well as the associated wavelength utilization.
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