A Secure Communication Scheme for Multiagent Systems

  • Wang Hongxue 
  • Varadharajan Vijay 
  • Zhang Yan 
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 1599)


In this paper we present a secure communication scheme for multiagent systems. First, we briefly introduce an architecture for multiagent systems, and discuss security problems with such systems. We then present the communication scheme in detail, including the mathematical principle and the cryptographic protocol. To further demonstrate how our communication scheme works, we present an example with which we show how a piece of plaintext message is encrypted and decrypted between two agents within a multiagent system in accordance with our communication scheme. In evaluation we show that, compared with other encryption systems such as RSA, our scheme is more simple and suitable for implementation on computers used in multiagent systems. Importantly, it remains as secure as other systems as long as the plaintext is not too short. In conclusion, we discuss issues about the management of secret keys and the suitability of the communication scheme.


Multiagent cooperation communication security encryption cryptography 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    James A. Cooper, Computer & Communications Security-Strategies for the 1990s, pages 310–331, McGraw-Hill, 1989.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Pfleeger, Charles P., Security in Computing, pages 4–6, Prentice Hall, 1997.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kinny D. and Georgeff, Modelling and Designing of Multi-Agent System, in Jorg P. Müller et al. (eds.) Intelligent Agent III, Springer-Verlag, LNAI 1193, pages 1–20, 1993.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Rao A.S., Georgeff M.P. (1991), Modelling rational agents within a BDI architecture, in Proceedings of KR’ 91 Conference, Cambridge, Mass, pages 473–384.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Kaynak, O., Honderd, G. and Edward G., Intelligent systems: safety, reliability and maintainability issues, NATO Advanced Research Workshop on Intelligent Systems: Safety, Reliability, and Maintainability Issues (1992: Kusadasi, Izmir, Turkey), Springer Verlag, 1993.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Boutilier C., Shoham Y. and Wellman M., Economic principles of multi-agent systems, Artificial Intelligence 94(1997), pages 1–6, Elsevier, 1997.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Wilfred C. Jamison, ACACIA: An agency based collaboration framework for heterogeneous multiagent systems, in Chengqi Z. and Lukose D. (eds.) Multi-Agent Systems-Methodologies and Applications, Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence (LNAI-1286), Springer Verlag Publishers, 1997.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    T. Balch and R.C Arkin, Motor schema-based formation control for multiagent robot teams, in Proceedings of 1st International Conference on Multiagent Systems, pages 10–16, 1995.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Mark d’Inverno, Michael Luck and Michael Wooldridge, Cooperation Structures, in Proceedings of Fifteenth International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, pp600–605, 1997.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Wang H., Constrained Object Hierarchies-An Architecture for Intelligent Systems, doctoral consortium abstract, in Proceedings of Fifteenth International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, pp1546, 1997.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    David Carmel and Shaul Markovitch, Exploration and adaptation in multiagent systems: a model-based approach, in Proceedings of Fifteenth International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, pp606–611, 1997.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Wang H. and John K. Slaney, On Generalities of Intelligent Systems, Technical Report TR-ARP-05-98, Automated Reasoning Project, The Australian National University, 1998.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Wang H. and John K. Slaney, The Design of an intelligent system for retrieving and compiling information over the World Wide Web, in Proceedings of Asian Pacific Web Conference (APWeb98), Beijing, 1998.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Wang H., GISM: A Language for modelling and developing agent-based intelligent systems, in Proceedings of the Fourth Australian Workshop On Distributed Artificial Intelligence, Brisbane, also in LNAI volume 1544, Springer Verlag Publishers, 1998.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Wang H., Constrained object hierarchies—an ontology of intelligent systems, PhD thesis(under examination), The Australia National University, 1999.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wang Hongxue 
    • 1
  • Varadharajan Vijay 
    • 2
  • Zhang Yan 
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceAustralian National UniversityCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.School of Computing and Information TechnologyUniversity of Western SydneyNepean KingswoodAustralia

Personalised recommendations