4G and 5G cellular networks could be vulnerable to cyberattacks because of decades-old standards and protocols, according to Sergey Puzankov, a security researcher at Positive Technologies. Of particular concern, the signaling system 7 (SS7) standard and protocols, first developed in 1975, are still used in these networks. SS7 contains security flaws that could enable attackers to intercept phone calls, as well as bypass two-factor authentication.
- 5G is forecasted to account for 21% of all wireless infrastructure investment in 2020.
- Puzankov told a BlackHat Asia audience that the attacks he uncovered all involve cross-protocol actions.
- Vendors have implemented security measures to protect their networks, but the researcher warned that these measures do not go far enough.