PRIVATEER aims to provide a privacy-centric security framework specifically designed for future 6G networks. PRIVATEER will build a framework, which will be analysed through five different use-case scenarios in the context of Intelligent Transportation Systems and Smart Cities, and help advance the project’s objectives.
As 6G networks are anticipated to facilitate more advanced use cases with increased user involvement, the sharing of sensitive data among various stakeholders, such as service providers, infrastructure providers, third parties, and even users themselves, is expected to grow rapidly.
To safeguard the privacy of stakeholders’ sensitive data, PRIVATEER leverages and enhances existing technologies, including decentralised federated learning powered by edge AI acceleration, distributed ledger technology (DLT) integrity controls, privacy and resource-driven optimisation of service orchestration, and threat sharing utilising searchable encryption.
To tackle this kind of issues, PRIVATEER has identified four challenges to test its architecture: 1) processing of infrastructure and network usage data, 2) security-aware orchestration, 3) infrastructure and service attestation and 4) cyber-threat intelligence sharing. The project consortium will face these challenges by introducing several innovations, including decentralised robust security analytics, privacy-aware techniques for network slicing and service orchestration and distributed infrastructure and service attestation mechanisms.
PRIVATEER will work on solutions to the identified challenges by building upon five real-world scenarios:
- ITS Edge service compromise: a Service Provider deploys a 6G network for a road operator, including low-latency edge functions for automated driving. To test this scenario, it is reckoned that an attacker could exploit a vulnerability, hijacking the edge functions and accessing sensitive vehicle data. Privacy-friendly CTI sharing is required to inform the road operator without revealing sensitive information. Finally, decisions can be made to ensure road user safety, such as disabling sensor sharing.
- ITS Privacy-friendly security service orchestration for logistics: a cargo company requires a 6G network for its logistics operations, with distributed resources and virtualised security functions. The company also requires a proof-of-transit mechanism to prevent traffic diversion and ensure secure communication with clients.
- ITS Verification of mass transportation application: a mass transportation company has leased a multi-domain 6G network to support its transportation services. This scenario is based on the idea that ensuring the integrity of both the application and infrastructure is crucial for passenger safety.
- Smart City Onboarding of a “neutral host” edge network: a municipality has deployed a network of “smart lamps” to provide shared access infrastructure for multiple Service Providers. The municipality seeks a trusted third party to conduct a comprehensive integrity check and certify the infrastructure.
- Smart City Multi-domain infrastructure verification for a new 6G smart city app: a startup has developed a smart city 6G application and plans to deploy it as a pilot project in two neighbouring cities. To support this application, the startup leases a multi-domain network slice that utilises the neutral-host infrastructure provided by the municipalities.
Through these scenarios, consortium partners will be able to set the project on the right track and advance towards a 6G connectivity world that revolves around a privacy-first security approach.
Dr Nikolaos Tsampieris and John Paddington, Senior Managers at ERTICO, have proposed and are actively involved in the three scenarios concerning the ITS ecosystem highlighting the importance of 6G in Smart Mobility. “Working on these scenarios will have the double potential of fostering Europe’s technology sovereignty in 6G and encouraging the preparation for early market adoption of 6G technologies”, says Mr Paddington. “PRIVATEER will play a role in boosting 5G deployment in Europe in view of developing digital lead markets and enabling the digital and green transition of the economy and society. These goals, part of the 6G SNS JU mission under which PRIVATEER is co-funded, are in alignment with ERTICO’s vision on Connectivity and 6G for Smart Mobility” states Dr Nikolaos Tsampieris, ERTICO lead in the project.
This article is based on the “Towards privacy-first security enablers for 6G networks: the PRIVATEER approach” paper, presented at the 23rd “International Conference on Embedded Computer Systems: Architectures, Modeling and Simulation” in Samos (https://samos-conference.com/wp/).
PRIVATEER has received funding from the Smart Networks and Services Joint Undertaking (SNS JU) under the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 101096110