5G technology promises to bring faster, more reliable internet access, and will drastically expand our “Internet of Things”. But with any innovation in technology comes the challenge of keeping up with the pitfalls. In this case, 5G will bring new challenges with regard to internet security, that we must anticipate so we can adapt our strategies.

In March, the European Union published a risk assessment report on 5G technology, which highlights the risks along with outlining the necessity for a new approach in securing telecom infrastructure. And while we obviously aren’t a part of the EU, the security concerns remain the same for the United States as well. As 5G technology continues to expand here, we share the following concerns with Europe.

Increased exposure. 5G networks are increasingly software-based, meaning greater vulnerability to security weaknesses. More products attached to the Internet of Things also means more potential entry points for hackers. Security patches must be installed promptly when they are released, and every device must be secured.

Mobile network operators will increasingly rely upon suppliers. This could increase the number of attack paths and potentially the severity of such attacks.

Each individual supplier’s risk profile will become more important. Suppliers should be carefully examined and monitored for their individual risk.

Dependency upon suppliers should be limited. A major dependency upon a single supplier could translate into a serious disruption should something go wrong within that supplier’s security operations. In other words, we should all remember the parable of placing all our eggs in one basket, and heed the warning.

Availability of 5G networks will become a concern. 5G is expected to become the basis of many critical IT applications; a problem with the integrity or availability of a network could trigger a snowball effect of disruption. What this means for business users is that a back-up plan for daily operations is essential.

Current security measures might not be enough. Measures considered acceptable by 4G standards might not stand up to the new vulnerabilities posed by 5G technology. We should all remain vigilant, and expect a learning curve as 5G is deployed and we begin using it. We’ll keep you updated on any security issues that we spot, with relation to the Internet of Things or network security in general. In the meantime, contact us at 888-RING-MY-TECH if you have any questions about your security measures and necessary updates.