SEAT: Secure Energy-Efficient Automated Public Transport Ticketing System

Chayan Sarkar, Jan Jaap Treurniet, Sujay Narayana, R. Venkatesha Prasad, Willem de Boer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


In smartcard-based travel payment systems, passengers have to place the smartcard near the journey registration devices once each for check-in and check-out to authenticate their travel. This is an annoying process when if the journey involves multiple stops. In this paper, we describe a working system of secure energy-efficient automatic ticketing (SEAT) for public transport, which transforms traditional check-in/check-out system into Be-in/Be-out system. In SEAT, a Bluetooth low energy (BLE) enabled smartphone communicates with registration devices to track the journey for pricing without any human intervention. SEAT is vigilant toward the energy consumption of the BLE device under various conditions, and security and privacy threats to the overall ecosystem. We develop models for energy consumption and latency for BLE devices under the influence of mutual interference based on experiments with 32 BLE devices. We utilize these models to develop an energy-efficient protocol for SEAT that is secure and privacy preserving. Our experiments show that a BLE module consumes only 18.3 J daily under the proposed system model, which is less than 0.1% of the total capacity of a typical smartphone battery.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-233
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Green Communications and Networking
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Be-in/Be-out
  • automated public transport ticketing
  • BLE mutual interference
  • BLE energy consumption


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