Maybe we do need to look at secure Mobile phone comms?

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by PartTimePongo, Jan 2, 2004.

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  1. .as a means of getting a high speed large capacity datanetwork up and running on exercise/ops ?

  2. Didn't you try to discuss this two years ago PTP on ARRSE?
  3. For secure comms just get two Geordies on the net......lets see the NSA decrypt those tinkers
  4. Ventress

    Ventress LE Moderator

    Mobiles are the way ahead- many an EX on the Plain would have collapsed if not for Mr Samsung and Nokia!
  5. Pretty interesting, but the Turkcell/Ericsson network isn't secure I don't think. That throws in some more considerations.
    Can you imagine exercising some sort of control over a system like that?
  6. RCSignals - look here

    We, the UK have had a secure (up to Secret) GSM for years so has Norway, France and others ((OPSEC ( All data from the Net)) .

    If even NATO can get the kit then why can't we. Oh yes its a $4000 a pop for the phone and $40000 for a base station . But I think that is quite a bit less than say one of the Bowman contractors lunch meetings.

    128 bit encryption with full GSM connectivity is pretty damn good . Also as its not U.S. kit that don't have back doors to break in.
  7. Yes I did Gunny.

    2 years ago? Blimey , PTP telecoms visionary - LOL :D

    Seriously , I appreciate the considerations on network security, and I believe an Israeli team have claimed to have actually cracked the GSM algoritims,1283,32900,00.html

    It is possible the algoritim has been cracked , but if the Voice and Text traffic, is wrapped in another algoritim, then it doesn't do the other team any good at all. Certainly not within a timescale, that would make the intelligence gained of any value.

    I know there are other Arrse users , who know their mobile phone bits and bobs , is there any reason, why mobile telephony can't be used in certain scenarios? Say a TETRA system etc?

    I have to admit a particular interest in encrypted mobile telephony , as my company has developed an encrypted SMS/MMS messaging system for mobiles using the US DOD AES algoritim, which is currently under evaluation by a couple of government agencies. Primairily because whilst voice and data transmission was encrypted on these systems, for some strange reason, text and imagery , phone to phone was not..
  8. PTP.

    Yes the two brains Alex Biryukov and Adi Shamir did crack the GMS with off an Off the shelf PC. They also happen to have been in the field since the 80'ies and are know wizzards at the game. And further papers refute the claim as they only broke a percentage of it.

    You are correct that even if the GSM is broken then the double encrypted part is still OK.but you knew that anyway
    Us stuff is good but as it is akll from the same place; well who knows who is listning in.

    If Skipjack has a back door, so some say - Biryukov and Shamir do. Then most other stuff from the US might also.

    Sounds strange that voice (which is data) and data ? is encrypted but that the text and image -(which is also data in the same protocol as the voice was A/D to, was not.)
  9. OB,

    As regards backdoors, I don't know if there are or not. But, in my dealings with the DarkSide to date, I can tell you for a fact that their particular fear is "homebrew" algorithims, so make from that what you will :wink:

    I didn't explain the encrypted data part properly. At present, to encrypt text or imagery, you require a hard terminal and a cable connected to the phone, not much use, if you are using your camera phone in a COP/ Surveillance/Deep recce scenario.Also, as far as I am aware/been briefed , there is no facility, to send encrypted imagery via a lightweight, portable inexpensive device.

    I used a camera phone on a TEWTS, , equipped with the encryption software.Transmitting phone was a Sony P800 , receiver a Nokia 7650. The imagery of the objective was received back at Coy , within seconds of being sent,via MMS/e-mail and decrypted successfully. The Imagery, could then be downloaded via bluetooth , I/R or cable to a laptop, and examined in more detail. The imagery of the obj, was stored encrypted on the phone as a Rijandael encrypted datablob, so if the phone had been captured etc, it would still have been secure. Since then, we have added an "auto-shred" feature, so once the message goes, it's destroyed on the transmitting device. With the new zoom/resolution/lowlight capabilities of standard phones coming in this year, mobies should be considered as an essential tool in Ops. comms.

    Admittedly, the whole system needs coverage in place, but if you're using satphones, or temporary masts , then it might be workable in other areas. GSM coverage, despite the Spams best efforts, is a world standard.
  10. GSM worldwide - true.

    However when the conflict starts then the rulers of said country can just turn off the GSM. Happend a few times over the last 10 years.

    OOps no comms, secure or otherwise.

    Another reason why we need our own.

    Sad but true. We need Bowman.
  11. OB, I take your point re. Dictators closing down the GSM network, but remember, as per the opening cut and paste, I'm talking about deploying with our own GSM kit, and satellite comms to talk out of theatre.
  12. So would the Armed forces have thier own Sim card, or roam on to another network...

    What would stop other mobile users logging into our network and filling the base stations....

    HLR and VLR would be a nightmare for such a small network.... also the base station would have to be defended as so much would rely on there performance and constant necessity to work.

    Convoy co-ck is a grown up in this matter, maybe he could input about the make up of a GSM network
  13. Yes, I was just saying that I don't think the system set up in Iran is secure, although I'm probably wrong.

    The NATO kit should be available, barring the price, but then "ruggedised" and unique military kit is always more $ (I agree about the lunch meetings!)

    Obviously there is a place and use for such a system, how far down it should be used is the question I suppose.

    Remember when this kit was being used 20 years ago? Personal portable telephones the size of a brief case, with a hand set on top? LOL

    As for the rest of the thread on encryption, the biggest mistake is to assume it cannot, or has not been cracked (just ask the Germans and Japanese) But then you know that.
  14. Fine for static or peace keeping ops but nothing else. Certainly not a mobile high intensity operation as base stations are required and need guarding.

    As has been mentioned before - security is a real issue.
  15. 749

    749 Old-Salt

    if the BTS was deployed in a HQ then it would be defended anyway
    and as at the moment the Ptarmigan network depends on single trucks being sited on hill top site with only a small crew to both defend and operate the kit then what would be the difference?
    the same guys could set up the BTS and then not have to worry about operating it, stag on!!