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The Evolving Network Security Environment – Can You Protect Your Customers in a 5G Universe?

July 17, 2018 — by Louis Scialabba0

Smart Farming depends on internet of things (IoT) devices and sensors to monitor vast farm fields, guiding farmers’ decisions about crop management through rich data. But it only takes one security flaw for all stakeholders within the ecosystem to be impacted. If hackers gain access to a single sensor, they can navigate their way to the farm-management application servers and manipulate data. Crop productivity levels are falsified, both basic and complex condition-monitoring systems are distorted, and real-time harm occurs through automatic IoT sensors. At stake is not only the productivity of crops, but the food that supplies livestock and humans: What if there was no corn for you?

A Challenging Opportunity

The demand for 24×7 access to high-speed internet from any device continues to grow alongside with mobile traffic, and now it includes IoT devices. Concurrently, the evolution of 5G networks progresses, with a mass rollout set to begin in 2020. With an increasing excitement for the new norm of smart appliances, one question remains: Who’s managing the security protection for these devices?

Every device connected to a network is another potential security weakness. One casino experienced this in live-time when hackers found their way into its network, towards the database of high-end clients, all via a smart thermometer. IoT devices are especially vulnerable because of manufacturers’ priority to maintain low costs, rather than spending more on additional security features. However, 5G networks demand security integration into the overall system’s architecture, rather than its current position as an additional element for manufacturers.

If mobile service providers create a secure environment that satisfies the protection of customer data and devices, they can establish a competitive advantage.

[You might also like: Battling Cyber Risks with Intelligent Automation]

Evolving Security Challenges in a Constantly-Changing Mobile Climate

When network technologies progress, so do security issues.

5G connection presents new opportunities, specifically being on par with wireline networks in terms of speeds and latency. However, they also generate new issues of attacks on mobile securities. 4G networks have already exhibited potential dangers in 5G; In the past year, hackers have explored the use of mobile devices for launching network attacks. One hacker can easily become an army of attackers in a matter of minutes.

“But, Who Owns the Problem?”

Between device manufacturers, component/software developers, enterprises, and service providers? Right now: No one.

While there is no clear agreement on which entity in the ecosystem is responsible for managing security, all entities will be impacted if the system is infiltrated.

[You might also like: 5G Security Challenges and Ways to Overcome Them]

Automation vs. Automation

With hackers typically utilizing networks of infected botnets as a destructive weapon of choice, automation is the most efficient method of identification and mitigation for threats.

Think of the network as one big sensor and the centralized control plane is positioned as the brain. Network endpoints serve as the nerves, sending back messages of what occurs in their respective detection spots. The centralized control plane compiles the feedback and responds with the best method of mitigation policy application.

For this behavioral-based tactic to be effectively implemented, systems must be inputted with large amounts of good data to avoid false negatives and biases from bad data. Sources should consist of large numbers of enterprises and networks in order to allow the AI to experience the necessary deep learning.

The Time is Now

With the rapid development of 5G networks, service providers must work fast to deliver the best possible experience to its customers. However, there’s still enough time to prepare before its initial launch in 2020.

Faster speeds. More capacity. New threats.

Download “Creating a Secure Climate for Your Customers: Evolving Mobile Network Security Needs in the Age of IoT and 5G.”

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Louis Scialabba

Louis Scialabba is Director of Carrier Solutions Marketing for Radware and is responsible for leading network security and application delivery marketing initiatives for wireless, wireline and cloud service providers. Mr. Scialabba has 21 years of experience in the communications and networking industry in a variety of roles, including Solutions Marketing, Sales, Business Development, Product Line Management, and Engineering. Prior to joining Radware, Mr. Scialabba spent much of his early career at Tellabs, where he was Director of Mobile Routing Technology Planning for the 8600, 8800, and 9200 product lines. He later became the Head of North America Marketing for Aviat Networks. Mr. Scialabba earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Illinois and a Master of Business Administration degree from St. Xavier University in Chicago.

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