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ATM Networks and Security

by Dr. Eva Bozoki - May 30, 2000

ATM Networks and Security

1. Introduction


2. ATM Connections


3. ATM Protocol Basics


4. Attacks


5. Security Measures


6. Placement of the User Plane Security Services


7. Secure Call Setup Protocol


8. Conclusion






About the Author


7. Secure Call Setup Protocol

The control plane security service is a two-way mutual authentication protocol between the end points of an ATM connection. Each signaling message carries a set of information units regarding the message, the connection, and the calling parties. These are called information elements (IE). A new class, the security services related IEs (SSIE), has been added to the existing list. The SSIE contains (a) certificate IEs with the identity and certificate of the user, and (b) authentication IEs with parameters used in the confidentiality and integrity services, and access control information. The following is an example of how SSIEs can be defined (a more rigorous definition can be found in [ATMSEC99]):

Certificate IE:

Communicating party's ID

Certificate ID

Authentication IE:


Security quality of service (QoS) parameters

Confidentiality parameters

Integrity parameters

Access control parameters

Digital signature (calculated over the IE or over the signaling message)

Whenever possible, the control plane security service should be incorporated into the only two signaling messages that are carried transparently through the network (end-to-end), the SETUP and CONNECT signals. However, sometimes more than two messages or longer messages are needed, in which case the security service is completed or wholly performed within the user plane virtual circuit (after the connection is established, but before data transfer).


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