Security Function Virtualization for IoT Applications in 6G Networks

One of the important characteristics envisioned for 6G is security function virtualization (SFV). Similar to network function virtualization (NFV) in 5G networks, SFV provides new opportunities for improving security while reducing the security overhead. In particular, it provides an attractive way of solving compatibility issues related to security. Malware in Internet of Things (IoT) systems is gaining popularity among cyber-criminals because of the expected number of IoT devices in 5G and 6G networks. To solve this issue, this article proposes a security framework that exploits softwarization of security functions via SFV to improve trust in IoT systems and contain the propagation of malware. IoT devices are categorized into trusted, vulnerable, and compromised levels using remote attestation. To isolate the devices in the three distinct categories, NFV is used to create separate networks for each category, and a distributed ledger is used to store the state of each device. Virtualized remote attestation routines are employed to avoid any compatibility issues among heterogeneous IoT devices and effectively contain malware propagation. The results show that the proposed framework can reduce the number of infected devices by 66 percent in only 10 seconds.

Year of Publication
IEEE Communications Standards Magazine
Number of Pages
Date Published
ISSN Number
2471-2825, 2471-2833
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