Federated-Learning-Based Anomaly Detection for IoT Security Attacks

Viraaji Mothukuri, Kennesaw State University
Prachi Khare, Kennesaw State University
Reza M. Parizi, Kennesaw State University
Seyedamin Pouriyeh, Kennesaw State University


The Internet of Things (IoT) is made up of billions of physical devices connected to the Internet via networks that perform tasks independently with less human intervention. Such brilliant automation of mundane tasks requires a considerable amount of user data in digital format, which, in turn, makes IoT networks an open source of personally identifiable information data for malicious attackers to steal, manipulate, and perform nefarious activities. A huge interest has been developed over the past years in applying machine learning (ML)-assisted approaches in the IoT security space. However, the assumption in many current works is that big training data are widely available and transferable to the main server because data are born at the edge and are generated continuously by IoT devices. This is to say that classic ML works on the legacy set of entire data located on a central server, which makes it the least preferred option for domains with privacy concerns on user data. To address this issue, we propose the federated-learning (FL)-based anomaly detection approach to proactively recognize intrusion in IoT networks using decentralized on-device data. Our approach uses federated training rounds on gated recurrent units (GRUs) models and keeps the data intact on local IoT devices by sharing only the learned weights with the central server of FL. Also, the approach's ensembler part aggregates the updates from multiple sources to optimize the global ML model's accuracy. Our experimental results demonstrate that our approach outperforms the classic/centralized machine learning (non-FL) versions in securing the privacy of user data and provides an optimal accuracy rate in attack detection.