A GPS spoofing generator using an open sourced vector tracking-based receiver

Qian Meng, Li Ta Hsu, Bing Xu, Xiapu Luo, Ahmed El-Mowafy

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Spoofing can seriously threaten the use of the Global Positioning System (GPS) in critical applications such as positioning and navigation of autonomous vehicles. Research into spoofing generation will contribute to assessment of the threat of possible spoofing attacks and help in the development of anti-spoofing methods. However, the recent commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) spoofing generators are expensive and the technology implementation is complicated. To address the above problem and promote the GPS safety-critical applications, a spoofing generator using a vector tracking-based software-defined receiver is proposed in this contribution. The spoofing generator aims to modify the raw signals by cancelling the actual signal component and adding the spoofing signal component. The connections between the spreading code and carrier, and the states of the victim receiver are established through vector tracking. The actual signal can be predicted effectively, and the spoofing signal will be generated with the spoofing trajectory at the same time. The experimental test results show that the spoofing attack signal can effectively mislead the victim receiver to the designed trajectory. Neither the tracking channels nor the positioning observations have abnormal changes during this processing period. The recent anti-spoofing methods cannot detect this internal spoofing easily. The proposed spoofing generator can cover all open-sky satellites with a high quality of concealment. With the superiority of programmability and diversity, it is believed that the proposed method based on an open source software-defined receiver has a great value for anti-spoofing research of different GNSS signals.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3993
JournalSensors (Switzerland)
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 16 Sept 2019


  • Autonomous vehicles
  • GPS
  • Spoofing generator
  • Vector tracking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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