Key pre-distribution techniques for security provision of Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) have attracted significant interests recently. In these schemes, a relatively small number of keys are randomly chosen from a large key pool and loaded on the sensors
deployment. After being deployed, each sensor tries to find a common key shared by itself and each of its neighbors to establish a link key to protect the wireless communication between themselves. One intrinsic disadvantage of such techniques is that some neighboring sensors do not share any common key. In order to establish a link key among such neighbors, a multi-hop secure path may be used to deliver the secret. Unfortunately, the possibility of sensors being compromised on the path may render such establishment process insecure.
In this work, we propose and analyze an Incremental Redundancy Transmission (IRT) scheme that uses the powerful Maximum Distance Separable (MDS) codes to address the problem. In the IRT scheme, the encoded secret link key is transmitted through multiple multi-hop paths. To reduce the total information that needs to be transmitted, the redundant symbols of the MDS codes are transmitted only if the destination fails to decode the secret. One salient feature of the IRT scheme is the flexibility of trading transmission for lower information disclosure. Theoretical and simulation results are presented to support our claim.