TAPInspector: Safety and Liveness Verification of Concurrent Trigger-Action IoT Systems

Yinbo Yu, Jiajia Liu

Trigger-action programming (TAP) is a popular end-user programming framework that can simplify the Internet of Things (IoT) automation with simple trigger-action rules. However, it also introduces new security and safety threats. A lot of advanced techniques have been proposed to address this problem. Rigorously reasoning about the security of a TAP-based IoT system requires a well-defined model and verification method both against rule semantics and physical-world states, e.g., concurrency, rule latency, and connection-based interactions, which has been missing until now. This paper presents TAPInspector, a novel system to detect vulnerabilities in concurrent TAP-based IoT systems using model checking. It automatically extracts TAP rules from IoT apps, translates them into a hybrid model with model slicing and state compression, and performs model checking with various safety and liveness properties. Our experiments corroborate that TAPInspector is effective: it identifies 533 violations with 9 new types of violations from 1108 real-world market IoT apps and is 60000 times faster than the baseline without optimization at least.

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