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Security in a 4G, M2M World

Ray Le Maistre
5/23/2014

One of the main takeaways from the Mobile Network Security Strategies event that Light Reading just hosted in London was the dizzying array of issues that communications network security managers now have to consider.

With Heavy Reading senior analyst and mobile network security specialist Patrick Donegan to guide them, speaker after speaker provided insights into the various challenges now facing wireless network operators as they build out their all-IP 4G LTE networks, and also advised how to identify and mitigate the various threats.

New ways of thinking are also required. In a recorded video keynote presentation, AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) Chief Security Officer Ed Amoroso noted that the world has moved on from the construction of "perimeter" security defenses designed to stop external threats entering through a defined network edge.

Those perimeters no longer exist: there is no outside and inside -- every connected device is a de facto extension of the network. In addition, every smartphone app is capable of damaging network integrity. And just wait until machine-to-machine (M2M) really takes off and the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes a reality…

Check out the various insights into this increasingly important topic, including a video interview with EE 's director of technical security Peter Erceg, at our special Industry Show News site.

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
5/29/2014 | 1:56:36 PM
Re: M2M Security
I don't see how a smart refrigerator could poison a person. It could switch itself off to make food go bad, but that's a relatively minor concern.

Self-driving cars are a huge security threat. Load one up with explosives and it's a land-based drone. 

Security needs to be built into the design of M2M systems. Too often digital security is reactive. Vendors put out products and then start thinking about security after they've been attacked. 
SachinEE
SachinEE
5/28/2014 | 12:04:38 PM
Re: M2M Security
This is an interesting but again a frightening idea. To imagine that living in a 4g M2M world where your enemies could hack into your car to cause an accident or even into your refrigerator to poison you at any time through the Machine to machine technology is an obscenity. I think software developers working on this technology should work on measures to ensure that once this M2M technology sets foot in the market; complaints to do with the integrity and safety of people's private information are completely nailed down.
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
5/27/2014 | 1:56:44 PM
Re: M2M Security
Kq4ym - It seems we worry about security only after technology has been deployed. Example #1: The Internet.
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
5/27/2014 | 1:55:27 PM
Re: M2M Security
I'm imaging an attacker taking control of a flock of drones and setting a swarm of them on a target. A physical kind of denial of service attack.
kq4ym
kq4ym
5/26/2014 | 6:07:08 PM
Re: M2M Security
The security issue may not be a current worry now, but as M2M is more widely employed the threat issue is certainly going to be a big one. And we though we were in trouble with viruses on our laptop, wait til our refrigerator gets attacked!
DanJones
DanJones
5/23/2014 | 4:45:45 PM
Re: M2M Security
Yes, it is apparently possible to utilize these tiny devices for DDOS attacks too. Lot more thought needs to go into M2M security.
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
5/23/2014 | 1:58:06 PM
M2M Security
Security threats are heightened dramatically in an M2M world. Imagine the havoc an attacker could wreak by gaining control of a driverless car or somebody's artificial kidney. 
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