Faculty Recruiting Support CICS

Paving the Way for Secure and Available Mobile Networked Systems

27 Jan
Thursday, 01/27/2022 4:00pm to 5:00pm

Abstract: Mobile networked systems (such as 5G and 4G LTE) are integral to today's society, providing seamless Internet connectivity to critical applications in healthcare, multimedia, automotive, smart cities, and others. Despite considerable academic and industrial research efforts, and major design improvements over the past decade across the cellular infrastructure (i.e., device, radio network, and the backend), security and availability have not withstood against a new class of security attacks (e.g., exploits at the boundaries of upper- and lower-layer protocol interactions). The consequence of this is far-reaching: the attacker can eavesdrop on users' communication; he can impersonate a user by forging packets; and he can trigger service outages.

In this talk, I will describe the fundamental design flaws (e.g., broken authentication procedures, and lack of access control) that have caused major security vulnerabilities and service unavailability. Then I will describe two complementary approaches that my students and I have developed to systematically fix the security loopholes and ensure always available 5G network operations despite system failures. Key to these approaches are domain-specific algorithm designs (e.g., merging the non-distinguishable states) and distributed system protocols (e.g., quorum-based technique). Our techniques enable us to (1) perform a comprehensive cellular vulnerability analysis in polynomial time, and (2) optimize the cellular control-plane for 5G edge applications that provide fast failure recovery, while satisfying cellular state consistency requirements. Looking forward, my research provides a new dimension for jointly solving security and availability problems in various related fields including Cellular Internet of Things (CIoT), industrial control systems, and network analytics.

Bio: Taqi Raza is an Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona. His research interests are broadly in mobile networked systems, with a recent focus on building practical systems to improve the security and availability of cloud-based 5G cellular networks and their emerging applications in IoT, industrial control systems, and autonomous vehicles. His research has been recognized with an NSF Award, an Arizona Technology and Research Initiative Award, a Quantum Network fellowship, and an LG Electronics Presidential award. Prior to joining the University of Arizona, Taqi received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from UCLA in 2019 with a Ph.D. Dissertation Year Award.

Join the Seminar

This seminar will be streaming via Zoom at the link above but requires a passcode. To obtain the passcode for this event, please see the announcements on the college email lists or contact us.