Philippe Langlois (Founder, P1 Security / TSTF)

Presentation Title Attacking The GPRS Roaming eXchange (GRX)
Presentation Abstract

GRX is the global private network where telecom network operators exchange GPRS roaming traffic of their users. It’s also used for all M2M networks where roaming is used, and that is the case from some company’s truck fleet management system down to intelligence GPS location spybug tracking system.

GPRS has been there from 2.5G GSM networks to the upcoming LTE Advanced networks, and is now quite widespread technology, along with its attacks. GRX has had a structuring role in the global telecom world at a time where IP dominance was beginning to be acknowledged. Now it has expanded to a lightweight structure using both IP technologies and ITU-originated protocols.

In this presentation, we’ll see how this infrastructure is protected and how it can be attacked. We’ll discover the issues with specific telco equipment inside GRX, namely GGSN and SGSN but also now PDN Gateways in LTE and LTE Advanced “Evolved Packet Core”. We will see the implications of this with GTP protocol, DNS infrastructure, AAA servers and core network technologies such as MPLS, IPsec VPNs and their associated routing protocols. These network elements were rarely evaluated for security, and during our engagements with vulnerability analysis, we’ve seen several vulnerabilities that we will be showing in this speech.

We will demo some of the attacks on a simulated “PS Domain” network, that it the IP part of the Telecom Core Network that transports customers’ traffic, and investigate its relationships with legacy SS7, SIGTRAN IP backbones, M2M private corporate VPNs and telecom billing systems. We will also seem how automation enable us to succeed at attacks which are hard to perform and will show how a “sentinel” attack was able to compromise a telecom Core Network during one penetration test.

About Philippe Langlois

Founder of P1 Security and Senior Researcher for Telecom Security Task Force. Philippe Langlois has proven expertise in network security. At P1 Security, he is leading a security research team to deliver the first products to scan SS7, SIGTRAN, IMS and LTE networks for vulnerabilities and to detect these attacks in realtime. He founded and led technical teams in several security companies Qualys, WaveSecurity, INTRINsec) as well as security research teams (Solsoft, TSTF).

He founded Qualys and led the world-leading vulnerability assessment service. He founded a pioneering network security company Intrinsec in 1995 in France, as well as Worldnet, France’s first public Internet service provider, in 1993. Philippe was also lead designer for Payline, one of the first e-commerce payment gateways. He has written and translated security books, including some of the earliest references in the field of computer security, and has been giving speeches on network security since 1995 (Interop, BlackHat, HITB Dubai, He can be reached through his website –