Mobility

Security Enhancements Against UMTS - GSM Interworking Attacks

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Executive Summary

In this paper, the authors first present three new attacks on Universal Mobile Telecommunication System (UMTS) in access domain. They exploit the interoperation of UMTS network with its predecessor, Global System for Mobile communications (GSMs). Two attacks result in the interception of the entire traffic of the victim UMTS subscriber in the GSM access area of UMTS network. These attacks are applicable, regardless of the strength of the selected GSM encryption algorithm. The third attack is an impersonation attack and allows the attacker to impersonate a genuine UMTS subscriber to a UMTS network and fool the network to provide services at the expense of the victim subscriber.

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