SAMOA: Secure and Scalable Platform for Massive-scale Mobile Applications

Portuguese Research Project with grant ID #PTDC/CCI-INF/32662/2017 active from July 2018 to June 2021

This project is funded by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia.

Total Funding Amount: 234.000€


Mobile applications have become the platform of choice for deploying innovative services. The interaction among users plays a central role in many of these novel applications, including multi-user games, applications for enhancing user experience in large events and touristic activities, among others. Traditional cloud-based architectures, where all interactions are mediated by servers lead to scalability and reliability issues.
In this project we propose adopting a decentralized architecture where mobile devices communicate directly and rely on cloud and edge resources for providing efficient, highly available and reliable solutions. To make these solutions a reality, we are focusing on the following three main challenges:

  • Efficient communication among clients: we are developing efficient and robust overlay algorithms to support the communications among the elements of the system. These algorithms are combining the use of peer-to-peer connections among mobile client for fast interaction and the use of connections with edge and cloud node for providing robustness and ease management.
  • Algorithms for partially replicated data: as each user is only interested in a small fraction of the data maintained by the system, and that the data evolves over time, it is necessary to develop algorithm for partial and dynamic replication.
  • Security mechanisms: we are focusing primarily on preventing unauthorized operations, while still allowing fast peer-to-peer interaction among mobile nodes. In this context, we are working not only on algorithms for providing security guarantees but also on programming abstractions for dealing with the problem.

As a predecessor of this project, we have built Legion, a framework for extending web applications with peer-to-peer interactions. Legion relies on WebRTC, STUN and TURN to allow web clients to securely replicate data objects and synchronize peer-to-peer. Legion relies on cloud services for providing data durability - it provides an API compatible with Google Drive Realtime. This was a result of SyncFree project (2013-16, UE FP7) and LightKone project (2017-19, UE H2020, 732505).

Open Positions

There are some positions available in the context of this project:




  • Legion: Enriching Internet Services with Peer-to-Peer Interactions [DOI | PDF | Bibtex]
    Albert van der Linde, Pedro Fouto, João Leitão, Nuno Preguiça, Santiago Castiñeira, and Annette Bieniusa: Proc. WWW'2017, 2017.
  • Conflict-free Replicated Data Types [PDF | Bibtex]
    Marc Shapiro, Nuno Preguiça, Carlos Baquero and Marek Zawirski. In Proceedings of the 13th International Symposium on Stabilization, Safety, and Security of Distributed Systems (SSS 2011), October 2011.