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Essay: Security Challenges in Fog Computing: Cloud Computing & Internet of Things (IoT) Solutions

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Fog Computing: Security issues for Computer Information Systems

  Jeevan Gujjula, gujju1j@cmich.edu

BIS 625 Research in Information Systems

College of Business Administration, Department of Business Information Systems

Central Michigan University

Mount Pleasant, Michigan 48858



Fog computing, network security, cloud security, cloud computing,  Internet of Things (IoTs),  Security and privacy, Network management.


Fog computing is a promising technology and new architecture to migrate data center tasks to the servers. Fog computing provides limited computing, storing, and networking services between traditional cloud computing data centers and end devices. It provides logical intelligence between traditional data centers and end devices by filtering the data from data centers (YingJuan Shi, 2016). Fog computing extends cloud computing by providing virtualized resources and engaged location-based services to the edge of the mobile networks so as to better serve mobile traffics. Fog computing is a lubricant of the combination of cloud computing and mobile applications (Tom H. Luan & Longxiang Gao, 2016). “Fog computing has emerged, where cloud computing is extended to the edge of the network to decrease the latency and network congestion” (Amir Vahid Dastjerdi & Buyya, 2015).

Cloud computing allows data to store and send just about anywhere around the world. While data dispersion helps give cloud computing a cost and performance edge (Edwards, John, 2009). Cloud computing is enabling all kinds of businesses to buy Internet-based access to hosted software, infrastructure and platform services on an on-demand, elastic basis (Schell, 2010).

Fog computing/ networking refers to network architecture that “uses one or more end-user clients or near-user edge devices to carry out a substantial amount of storage (rather than stored primarily in cloud data centers), communication (rather than routed over backbone networks), and control, configuration, measurement and management (rather than controlled primarily by network gateways such as those in the LTE core)” (Loke, 2015). Fog computing extends Cloud computing, thus enabling new applications and services. Few major characteristics of Fog Computing are mobility, low latency, large number of nodes and widely spread geographical distances. Fog model provides benefits in advertising, computing, entertainment and other applications, well positioned for data analytics and distributed data collection points (Abdelshkour, 2015).

Cloud computing has few major drawbacks. In traditional data base centers, the nodes are part of internet things which upload their data to the cloud, which performs the processing and actions. From a network builder's perspective, the biggest challenge this poses is backhaul, or the links between devices in the field and data centers that can analyze and respond to the data they spit out (Lawson, 2014). If the end nodes are geographically at a huge distance from cloud datacenter the decision making process will have huge latency (Y.Navaneeth Krishnan, 2015). Fog nodes, functional nodes deployed close to or even diffused onto the endpoints, can assist the endpoints in updating their security credentials and software (Zhang, 2016).

Overview of Fog computing:


From networking perspective Fog Computing is defined as “It is an architecture that users one or a collaborative multitude of end-user clients or near-user edge devices to carry out a substantial amount of storage, communication and management.” (Chiang, 2015).

Fog Computing provides logical intelligence to the end devices with limited computing, storing and networking in a distributed way between end devices and  cloud computing data centers. As a paradigm of computing, fog computing is still not a fully developed concept in the community (C. L. Shanhe Yi, Qun Li, 2015).

Figure 1- Fog Computing Architecture

In this paper, fog computing is considered as an extension of the cloud computing to the edge of the network, which is a highly virtualized platform of resource pool that provides computation, storage, and networking services to nearby end users. For fog computing, which locates all hardware at the net-work edge, hardware standardization is even more difficult (Zhanikeev, 2015).

In the perspective of work, fog computing is defined as “a scenario where a huge number of heterogeneous (wireless and sometimes autonomous) ubiquitous and decentralized devices communicate and potentially cooperate among them and with the network to perform storage and processing tasks without the intervention of third parties” (Z. Q. Shanhe Yi, and Qun Li, 2015). “These tasks can be for supporting basic network functions or new services and applications that run in a sandboxed environment” (Z. Q. Shanhe Yi, and Qun Li, 2015).

Fog computing is an encouraging solution for increasing network traffic today. Fog computing extends cloud computing in various ways by providing virtualized resources and location-based services so as to serve and reduce mobile traffics. Fog computing acts as a lubricant for cloud computing. (Tom H. Luan∗, 2016).

The hardware architecture of the fog computing platform consists of connecting, Gateway, Sensor, Actuator and Computing (Vatanparvar & Faruque, 2015).

Figure 2- Typical Fog Computing setup.

Application Scenarios:

Authentication: Authentication is an important issue for the security of fog computing since services are offered to massive-scale end users by front fog nodes. The main security issues of fog computing as the authentication at different levels of fog nodes (Wen, 2014).

Network Security: Due to the predominance of wireless in fog networking, wireless network security is big concern to fog networking. Example attacks are jamming attacks, sniffer attacks, etc. (Wen, 2014). Those attacks can be addressed in the research domain of wireless network, which is not in the scope of this survey (Tom H. Luan∗, 2016).

Security and privacy issues: “Security and privacy should be addressed in every layer in designing fog computing system” (Tom H. Luan∗, 2016a). Fog Computing is used to launch disinformation attacks against malicious insiders, preventing them from distinguishing the real sensitive customer data from fake worthless data (Salvatore J. Stolfo, 2015). Security and privacy issues of moving into the cloud, outlining are some of the information security benefits of cloud computing (Anonymous, 2009).

In cloud computing deployment, data centers are usually owned by cloud service providers. However, fog service providers can be different parties due to different deployment choices: (1) Internet service providers or wireless carriers, who have control of home gateways or cellular base stations, may build fog with their existing infrastructures. (2) Cloud service providers, who want to expand their cloud services to the edge of the network, may also build fog infrastructures. (3) End users, who own a local private cloud and want to reduce the cost of ownership, would like to turn the local private cloud into fog and lease spare resources on the local private cloud. This flexibility complicates the trust situation of fog (Flavio Bonomi, 2012).

Data Privacy: To protect data privacy, sensitive data from end users have to be encrypted before outsourced to the fog node, making effective data utilization services challenging. One of the most important services is keyword search, i.e., keyword search among encrypted data files (Z. Q. Shanhe Yi, and Qun Li, 2015).

Challenges: There are many open problems that will have to be addressed to make the fog a reality. It is necessary to clearly identify these problems so future research works can focus on them. The challenges come from how to design interplay between fog and cloud to accommodate different workloads(Rodrigo Romana, 2016) Major challenge ahead is security. for fog devices hosting applications. Other challenges for the fog to become a reality are compute/ storage limitation, data security, standardization of network protocols and programmability (Vaquero & Rodero-Merino, 2014).

Research questions and objectives:

1. What are the opportunities and challenges that would overcome the privacy and security issues in Fog Computing?

2. Will cloud computing be efficient data center system if Fog computing evolves rapidly in the coming future?

3. How is confidentiality maintained by fog computing?


1. The main objective of this research is to study and overcome the challenges faced with security issues in Cloud computing.

2. Applied techniques of fog computing to overcome security and privacy issues through Internet.

3. Fog computing advantages for services in several domains, and provide the analysis of security issues in current paradigm.


Research design: The research methodology includes literature review, conducting surveys/ interviews, case studies. First we study the privacy issues and security threats faced by current computing information systems and try to analyze the applied techniques to overcome the security issues in cloud computing. Relevant questionnaires are prepared and published in the internet as a survey. A case study is done by comparing cloud computing with fog computing overcoming the security issues.

Participants: As the research involves network security implementation, the ongoing technologies and Cloud computing service providers to take survey for my research.

Techniques: The applied techniques involved in the research process is all about how to make data secure and authenticated through cloud computing so as to overcome privacy and security issues. Based on this, an analysis can be drawn out how information systems is affected with out proper implementation of security applications through the internet



As my research methodology is currently on the Fog computing with applied techniques on security issues through Cloud computing, I need to have documentation and focus current technologies that implement fog computing.


Abdelshkour, M. (2015). IoT, from Cloud to Fog Computing.

Amir Vahid Dastjerdi, H. G., Rodrigo N. Calheiros, Soumya K. Ghosh, and, & Buyya, R. (2015). Fog Computing: Principles, Architectures, and Applications.

Anonymous. (2009, 11/20/

2009 Nov 20). ENISA Clears the Fog on Cloud Computing Security. PR Newswire. Retrieved from http://cmich.idm.oclc.org/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/453549808?accountid=10181

Chiang, M. (2015). Fog Networking: An Overview on Research Opportunities.

Flavio Bonomi, R. M., Jiang Zhu, Sateesh Addepalli. (2012). Fog Computing and Its Role in the Internet of Things.

Lawson, S. (2014). 'Fog Computing' Links Clouds to the Internet of Things. CIO, 27(9).

Loke, S. W. (2015). The Internet of Flying-Things:

Opportunities and Challenges with Airborne Fog

Computing and Mobile Cloud in the Clouds.

Rodrigo Romana, J. L., Masahiro Mambob. (2016). Mobile Edge Computing, Fog et al.: A Survey and Analysis of Security Threats and Challenges.

Salvatore J. Stolfo, M. B. S., Angelos D. Keromytis. (2015). Fog Computing: Mitigating Insider Data Theft Attacks in the Cloud.

Schell, E. (2010). CLOUD SOLUTIONS: Cutting through the fog. 28, 33.

Shanhe Yi, C. L., Qun Li. (2015). A survey of Fog Computing: Concepts, Applications and Issues.

Shanhe Yi, Z. Q., and Qun Li. (2015). Security and Privacy issues of Fog Computing:  A survey.

Tom H. Luan∗, L. G., Zhi Li‡, Yang Xiang∗, Guiyi We†, and Limin Sun‡. (2016a). Fog Computing: Paradigm, Protocol and Security Issues.

Tom H. Luan∗, L. G., Zhi Li‡, Yang Xiang∗, Guiyi We†, and Limin Sun‡. (2016b). A View of Fog Computing from Networking Perspective.

Vaquero, L. M., & Rodero-Merino, L. (2014). Finding your Way in the Fog: Towards a Comprehensive Definition of Fog Computing. SIGCOMM Comput. Commun. Rev., 44(5), 27-32. doi:10.1145/2677046.2677052

Vatanparvar, K., & Faruque, M. A. A. (2015). Energy management as a service over fog computing platform. Paper presented at the Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE Sixth International Conference on Cyber-Physical Systems, Seattle, Washington.

Wen, I. S. S. (2014). The Fog computing Paradigm : Scenarios and Security Issues.

Y.Navaneeth Krishnan, C. N. B., Aparajit P Utpat. (2015). Fog Computing- Network Based Cloud Computing.

YingJuan Shi, H. W., Si Lu, GeJian Ding, H. Eduardo Roman. (2016). The Fog Computing service for Healthcare.

Zhang, T. (2016). Fog Boosts Capabilities to Add More Things Securely to the Internet.

Zhanikeev, M. (2015). A Cloud Visitation Platform to Facilitate Cloud Federation and Fog Computing.

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