The flexibility of amorphous anodized alumina (AAO) in developing radiation dosimeter for hadron therapy is reported by controlled carbon ion implantation, followed by thermoluminescence (TL) measurements. The efficacy of amorphous AAO in controlling TL sensitivity is found to be governed by an increase in F+ defect centers as a function of carbon concentration, as revealed from the close resemblance of the trend in photoluminescence intensity. Moreover, its nanoporous structure is demonstrated to be advantageous for defect engineering due to the increase in the surface-to-volume ratio. Detailed X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis suggests the formation of F+ centers by substituting Al3+ ions with C2+ in the vicinity of oxygen vacancies, where depth-dependent study showed the evolution of conducting channels owing to sp2 hybridized C-C bonding, leading to a differential charging effect. This work provides a direction to tune nanoporous AAO in its amorphous form for future ion beam dosimetry. © 2018 Author(s).