A Secure Architecture for Nomadic User in IMS Network

A Secure Architecture for Nomadic User in IMS Network

A. Abou El Kalam (Université de Toulouse, France and Université Cadi-Ayyad, Morocco), M. Maachaoui (Université de Toulouse, France and Université Cadi-Ayyad, Morocco), N. Idboufker (Université Cadi-Ayyad, Morocco), H. Ait Lahcen (Université de Toulouse, France and Université Cadi-Ayyad, Morocco) and A.Ait Ouahman (Université Cadi-Ayyad, Morocco)
DOI: 10.4018/jmcmc.2012010101


The IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) is a basis for a significant new architecture which offers network operators the opportunity to expand their services, by integrating voice and multimedia communications and delivering them into new environments with new purposes. Basically, the IMS is an overlay network on top of IP layer that uses Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) as the primary signaling mechanism. SIP works at the application layer in IP networks. It is thus faced to not only the IP-networks security issues, but also to new issues which are related to the SIP protocol directly. Consequently, using IMS bears several new security challenges. This paper presents the most relevant SIP-related security vulnerabilities and threats, and the implementation and simulation test bed to experiment two versions of the SIP Asterisk software to emphasize these threats. The different security mechanisms that can be deployed to overcome the SIP security issues while putting emphasis the most important ones are discussed. Afterwards, the authors propose adaptable solutions to the SIP threats already identified for a specific service (access information from anywhere) in IMS context. Finally, conclusions are drawn and some perspectives are introduced to improve the security of multimedia applications.
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2. Communication In Ims: A Sip Scenario

Before tackling our security analysis, let us first present a global idea about our target system: IMS SIP. IMS has a lot of entities and also defines many open and standard reference points for the communication between different equipments. The architecture of IMS is shown in Figure 1 (RADVISION, 2006).

Figure 1.

IP multimedia subsystem architecture

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