5G Connection Is Not As Secure As You Might Think, Researchers Reveal A Dozen Vulnerabilities

Many praise 5G for comparatively being newer, faster and more secure than 4G. However, some of the security researchers from University of Lowa and Purdue University discovered that there are around 12 vulnerabilities in the new 5G technology. Researchers were able to use these vulnerabilities to perform certain attacks, like tracking location, sending fake emergency alerts, as well as cutting off phone’s 5G connection from the network, completely.

It might be commonly though that the organizations responsible for its security protocol, like 3GPP, failed to implement the clear requirements. According to researchers, the reason behind 5G’s vulnerabilities is not enough formal specifications and thus, it’s ambiguous.

The researchers’ team also thinks that the current standard mentions security and privacy in nonfigurative way, and the conformance test only deals with the primitive security requirements and is not complete or competitive to adversarial environments.

To further elaborate their stance, researchers formed a fake malicious radio base station to create an ‘adversarial environment’. The new tool, 5GReasoner was also used and then various attacks were carried out on Smartphone connected with 5G.

A denial-of-service (DoS) attack was carried out on phone, which resulted in completely cutting off phone’s connection from the network. In another attack, the location of the phone was tracked in real time. Also, the paging channel of phone was hijacked to send fake emergency alerts. This could create an unnecessary chaos among people.

The team was able to easily exploit the vulnerabilities of 5G but considering the seriousness of its nature, they decided not to reveal the methods and codes used for it.

The GSM Association was informed about it but their spokesperson responded to media agency saying that the vulnerabilities found out are ‘nil’ and holds no practical ground.

Read next: 5 Best Smartphones To Power Your 5G Network (So Far!)
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