BPA Featured Article

Proxy to Include LTE Security Gateways by Stoke in its Network Solutions



By Frank Griffin, TMCnet Contributing Writer
July 23, 2014


The 2014 HOPE X was a hacker event that just took place in New York City over four days, which according to its site has been around since 1994. These events take place globally year-round by many different groups to discuss the many ways in which the vulnerabilities of software and hardware can be exploited. This doesn't include hackers financed by criminal organizations, and governments with sophisticated software and hardware specifically designed to breach personal as well as public and private entities.With so many threats facing organizations, it is important to protect each gateway that could potentially be exploited, including mobile networks.



As mobile technology continues to overtake PCs, mobile networks are increasingly catching the attention of hackers. Firm Proxy, provider of monitoring and managing solutions of large multi-vendor networks, has entered into an agreement with Stoke (News - Alert), Inc., which secures LTE communications between the radio access network and the operator core. Firm Proxy will now be able to include Stoke's network monitoring and management solutions portfolio as part of the services it provides.

As a RAN agnostic security solutions that is interoperable with all key RAN technologies, the Stoke security gateway aggregates, encrypts and optimizes traffic, before it enters the network core. This is especially important as organizations around the world continue to integrate mobile devices into the company network as part of BYOD initiatives.

The deployment of LTE (News - Alert) networks means this architecture is going to provide an efficient delivery of data which introduces more risks. The Stoke RAN security protects the user, control plane and management plane traffic by establishing and managingsecure IPsec connections between the evolved packet core (EPC) and eNodeBs.

By securing the RAN-core mobile access border, it protects the mounting threat LTE networks face from:

Unauthorized access – from untrusted backhaul and more physically accessible small cell sites that can provide entry points for hackers.

Service disruption from signaling surges- large-scale network outages can take place from unexpected signaling spikes originating from badly configuredover-the-top applications, malicious hackers, or localized outages.

Subscriber privacy breach - inadequate protection of consumer data can result in expensive lawsuits, fines from regulatory bodies, and loss of customers with long term damage to the brand.

According to Stoke, "The Mobile Border Agent feature adds further EPC protection by monitoring signaling load and applying traffic shaping policies or even blacklisting to mitigate overload threats. Strong authentication mechanisms include Internet Key Exchange (IKE) and support for certificates up to 2048-bit key length." 




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