Mobile Networks and Applications

, Volume 21, Issue 5, pp 729–743 | Cite as

Software-Defined Mobile Networks Security

  • Min Chen
  • Yongfeng Qian
  • Shiwen Mao
  • Wan Tang
  • Ximin Yang


The future 5G wireless is triggered by the higher demand on wireless capacity. With Software Defined Network (SDN), the data layer can be separated from the control layer. The development of relevant studies about Network Function Virtualization (NFV) and cloud computing has the potential of offering a quicker and more reliable network access for growing data traffic. Under such circumstances, Software Defined Mobile Network (SDMN) is presented as a promising solution for meeting the wireless data demands. This paper provides a survey of SDMN and its related security problems. As SDMN integrates cloud computing, SDN, and NFV, and works on improving network functions, performance, flexibility, energy efficiency, and scalability, it is an important component of the next generation telecommunication networks. However, the SDMN concept also raises new security concerns. We explore relevant security threats and their corresponding countermeasures with respect to the data layer, control layer, application layer, and communication protocols. We also adopt the STRIDE method to classify various security threats to better reveal them in the context of SDMN. This survey is concluded with a list of open security challenges in SDMN.


Software defined mobile network (SDMN) OpenFlow Network function virtualization (NFV) Security 



This work was supported by the Program of International S&T Cooperation of MOST (No.2013DFA11140, No. 2013CFA051), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant No.61210010, No.61300231, 61572220). Mao’s work is supported in part by the US NSF (Grant CNS-0953513) and by the Wireless Engineering Research and Education Center at Auburn University.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Embedded and Pervasive Computing Lab, School of Computer Science and TechnologyHuazhong University of Science and TechnologyWuhanChina
  2. 2.Department of Electrical & Computer EngineeringAuburn UniversityAuburnUSA
  3. 3.College of Computer ScienceSouth-Central University for NationalitiesWuhanChina

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