A Context Transfer Model for Secure Handover in WiMAX/LTE Integrated Networks

A Context Transfer Model for Secure Handover in WiMAX/LTE Integrated Networks

E. Prince Edward (Sri Krishna Polytechnic College, Coimbatore, India)
DOI: 10.4018/IJMCMC.2014070103


One of the recent research issues in IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) based heterogeneous internetworking environment is to provide secure handover when a mobile node (MN) moves between different access networks. Various security schemes are available in literature but most of the schemes provide security but degrades the Quality of Service (QoS). The objective of this work is to provide secure and efficient handover in an IMS based Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave access (WiMAX)/ Long Term Evolution (LTE) integrated networks by using the proposed Secure Context Transfer Model (SCTM). New Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) messages are introduced in the proposed SCTM for transferring the context securely from old Proxy-Call session control function (P-CSCF) server to new P-CSCF server during handover. SCTM is verified using NS-2 simulator and analyzed based on Queuing theory. The results show that when compared with previous approaches, SCTM shows an improvement of 23% in terms of handover delay and packet loss providing security and guaranteed QoS to mobile users.
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Most of the existing security mechanisms available in literature add complexity and overhead to handover management. Hence it is very important to maintain trade-off between security and QoS during handover. The tradeoff among these two parameters will increase more when service provider is different from network provider. In such cases, it is essential for a roaming user to get authenticated both from network provider as well as service provider. Here, AAA protocol is used for authentication, which is more costly. Furthermore the distance from the home network and visited network is higher which adds handover delay (Faraz et al., 2007). MPA (Media-Independent Pre-Authentication) (dutta et al., 2008) is another effective authentication methodology used in handover. MPA mechanism does not provide security while exchanging messages during handover and more packets are lost if handover takes place before the completion of binding update. But it also adds latency during the handover process. The Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) is a client server protocol which uses the authentication server to implement authentication process (Gaabab et al., 2007). (Reem et al. 2014) have utilized EAP Authentication and Key Agreement (EAP-AKA) for IMS based WiMAX/LTE secure handover. But EAP-AKA process involves various exchange of messages and repeated execution every time when a handover occurs. IPSec is one of the techniques used for data security, for providing security to those messages that run over IP protocols, i.e., IPv6.For real-time services, such as voice and video, the SIP (Rosenberg et al., 2002) is becoming the leading signaling protocol in IP networks and has already been accepted as the signaling standard by IETF and 3GPP. SIP is used as the signaling protocol for IMS networks. Furthermore SIP has the provision for encapsulating the IP Sec packets within the SIP request and Response message structure.

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