Federated Wireless, CU Boulder Team to Develop Secured 5G Network for US Defense

Network provider Federated Wireless has partnered with the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) on a $5-million effort to secure military and government 5G communications.

Under the National Science Foundation’s Convergence Accelerator program, selected experts will develop novel solutions to enhance the privacy of 5G-based US Department of Defense network assets across the globe.

Federated Wireless and CU Boulder will leverage capabilities completed through a contract awarded in September 2022 focusing on a track called 5G Hidden Operations through Securing Traffic (GHOST).

“The goal of the work is to ensure a range of users, from US soldiers to commercial enterprises, can use 5G cellular networks in other countries, without those countries being able to extract valuable operational information,” Federated Wireless Chief Technology Officer Kurt Schaubach explained.

“We are honored to have been again selected by CU Boulder and the NSF to strengthen security for 5G networks.”

Solving ‘Core Challenge’

The Convergence Accelerator’s GHOST will provide US warfighters, operators, and critical infrastructure the ability to securely utilize  5G networks internationally.

The initiative is expected to maintain protection even when the 5G networks are deployed by potentially adversarial nations.

Technologies already explored under GHOST include anonymizing user identities and disguising protocols to minimize monitoring and surveillance by hostile actors.

A U.S. Soldier assigned to 2d Cavalry Regiment (2CR) listens to radio communication during Dragoon Ready at the 7th Army Training Command's Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, Oct. 16, 2018.
A US soldier assigned to 2d Cavalry Regiment listens to radio communication during Dragoon Ready at the 7th Army Training Command’s Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, Oct. 16, 2018. Photo: Sgt. Kiara Flowers/US Army

“GHOST addresses the core challenge of providing secure communications over untrusted networks. At the end of this phase, we’ll demonstrate a working integrated prototype that demonstrates GHOST concepts,” CU Boulder GHOSt Lead Keith Gremban said.

“We are extremely pleased to have Federated Wireless on board for their communications expertise and capabilities in rapidly prototyping and demonstrating cutting-edge 5G concepts.”

“Their involvement helps enable us to build a prototype capable of securing 5G communications in the most difficult environments.”

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