Attacking the V:On the resiliency of adaptive-horizon MPC

Tiwari, Ashish, Smolka, Scott A., Esterle, Lukas, Lukina, Anna, Yang, Junxing and Grosu, Radu (2017). Attacking the V:On the resiliency of adaptive-horizon MPC. IN: Automated Technology for Verification and Analysis - 15th International Symposium, ATVA 2017, Proceedings. Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) . Springer.


Inspired by the emerging problem of CPS security, we introduce the concept of controller-attacker games. A controller-attacker game is a two-player stochastic game, where the two players, a controller and an attacker, have antagonistic objectives. A controller-attacker game is formulated in terms of a Markov Decision Process (MDP), with the controller and the attacker jointly determining the MDP’s transition probabilities. We also introduce the class of controller-attacker games we call V-formation games, where the goal of the controller is to maneuver the plant (a simple model of flocking dynamics) into a V-formation, and the goal of the attacker is to prevent the controller from doing so. Controllers in V-formation games utilize a new formulation of model-predictive control we have developed called Adaptive-Horizon MPC (AMPC), giving them extraordinary power: we prove that under certain controllability conditions, an AMPC controller can attain V-formation with probability 1. We evaluate AMPC’s performance on V-formation games using statistical model checking. Our experiments demonstrate that (a) as we increase the power of the attacker, the AMPC controller adapts by suitably increasing its horizon, and thus demonstrates resiliency to a variety of attacks; and (b) an intelligent attacker can significantly outperform its naive counterpart.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: Engineering & Applied Sciences
Additional Information: © Springer International Publishing AG 2017. The final publication is available at Springer via
Event Title: 15th International Conference on Automated Technology for Verification and Analysis, ATVA 2017
Event Type: Other
Event Dates: 2017-10-03 - 2017-10-06
Uncontrolled Keywords: Theoretical Computer Science,Computer Science(all)
Full Text Link: https://arxiv.o ... /abs/1702.00290
Related URLs: http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
https://link.sp ... -319-68167-2_29 (Publisher URL)
Published Online Date: 2017-09-27
Authors: Tiwari, Ashish
Smolka, Scott A.
Esterle, Lukas ( 0000-0002-0248-1552)
Lukina, Anna
Yang, Junxing
Grosu, Radu



Version: Accepted Version

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