5Gtechnology is the succeeding step in the development of mobile communication.5G will not only provide voice and data communication but also provide competenciesfor new technologies such as Internet of Things. The main technological enablers such as cloudcomputing, Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network FunctionVirtualization (NFV) are maturing towards their use in 5G. However, there are unrelentingsecurity challenges in these technologies besides the growing concerns for userprivacy. In this paper, we provide an overview of the security challenges inthese technologies and the issues of privacy in 5G.KEYWORDS5G technology, Security, Privacy, SDN,NDV 5G technology aims to produce a morevirtualised, distributed and unsolidified environment comprising differentcommunication technologies and compute objects.
The business ecosystem willspan across different radio technologies and a multi-dimensional array ofvirtual components, each owned and operated by different organisations with ahigh notch of sharing of physical resources. The dawn of 5G therefore bringsthe possibility to reconsider the fragility of our internet as it advances froma somewhat flat interconnect of systems to a multidimensional array of systems,services, devices and stakeholders.Hypertexttransfer protocol (http/https) carries much of the internet traffic, originallyserving web pages, but now more commonly serving data transactions betweensoftware components. Virtual Private Networks (VPN) allow us to connectdifferent segments of IP networks using secure ‘pipes’. Similarly Secure Shell(SSH) allows for a secure pipe to be formed to execute software on remotesystems.
All of these protocols traditionally allow for secure communicationbetween devices. The advent of virtualisation has seen aneven more rapid acceleration of the usages for which our computing power can beutilised. Efficiency and economic gains are made, and our daily productivityvastly improved. However, this isn’t achieved without a different fee.Virtualisation is encompassing to cover almost all aspects of the communicationnetwork. Virtual Machines (VM), Software Defined Radio (SDR), Software DefinedNetworking (SDN), network functions virtualisation (NFV) all allow hardware tobecome rather generic and controllable by software provided by third parties.
In fact the mainstream discussion todate with respect to 5G is technologically concentrated. There is a significantlack of consideration for the next generation applications that could use 5G.Is it about more video services, multi-angular view 3D TV, distribution of 3Dprinting data, Tactile Internet, Internet of Things? What are the next killerapplications / services for which the new 5G capability will enable?The widespread consideration to usecommon-off-the-shelf (COTS) technology tries to restore this economy of scale.Markets are currently attempting to repurpose consumer technologies forprovision of more capable wireless and networked applications that areconsidered critical for the safety and security of our society.
Thisrepurposing can surely benefit our critical services by acquiring the low costand technological maturity which has been driven predominantly from theconsumer market. With the current day consideration to adopt COTS in criticalcommunication applications and the economic justification behind that, it islikely that this will continue long into the future.Among many there are two distinctcriteria which are commonly quoted as high level requirements for 5G:a) Creating a secure, reliable anddependable internet with zero perceived downtime for service provision b) User Controlled PrivacyConsidering just these two criteria andthe discussion given above with regard to our fragile internet, and the need tosupport mission critical communication, we uncover a significant distinctionwhich should guide on the approach to assure the security and resilience of 5Ginfrastructure and the information services which use it.The first criteria a) relates principallyto the resilience of the 5G infrastructure. By definition, resilience is ameasure of a systems ability to retain its originally intended performanceafter being compromised.
Compromise in terms of 5G infrastructure could affectthe wired and wireless communication bearers, the virtual components or thephysical networking and virtualisation hardware. Resilience of the datatransfer carried by the 5G infrastructure is also reflected here.The second criteria b) relates toinformation. Information is considered here separately but somewhat linked tothe consideration of data in the first criteria.
Information represents themeaning of data; the facts that the data represents; the value that the datahas once used in the context of it purpose. Therefore the information carriedby the 5G network must be protected in its own context, and not necessarilyrely upon the infrastructure that carried it.In conclusion, the following challengesneed to be considered / addressed:· A 5G network willconsist of many more degrees of freedom than any other network.· 5G is likely to beadopted by mission critical applications (in some form), which fortify thesafety and security of our society.· Security and resilienceof 5G should be developed from the outset, and not left to be locked on afterfirst deployments.· Information carried bya 5G network has a value which will reduce if the 5G network is compromised inany way.