University of Iowa Computer Science Professor Omar Chowdhury and graduate student discover flaws in 4G and 5G networks

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Omar Chowdhury University of Iowa Computer Science Professor Omar Chowdhury and Computer Science graduate student Mitziu Echeverria contributed to research in collaboration with researchers at Purdue University that discovered security and privacy flaws within 4G and 5G networks. Their findings were presented at the Network and Distribution System Security Symposium in San Diego. Their paper titled "Privacy Attacks to the 4G and 5G Cellular Paging Protocols Using Side Channel Information" was also one of the finalists for the distinguished paper award out of 89 papers accepted at the symposium.

Their research found that users of 4G and 5G networks are vulnerable to attacks that enable a hacker with the knowledge of the user's Twitter handle and phone number to intercept their phone calls and track their locations. The study was featured across various news sources such as Wired, CNet, Digital Information World and more.

Professor Chowdhury currently co-directs the Computational Logic Center (CLC) at the University of Iowa. His research interest includes computer security and privacy, and formal methods.

The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences offers about 70 majors across the humanities; fine, performing and literary arts; natural and mathematical sciences; social and behavioral sciences; and communication disciplines. About 15,000 undergraduate and nearly 2,000 graduate students study each year in the college’s 37 departments, led by faculty at the forefront of teaching and research in their disciplines. The college teaches all Iowa undergraduates through the college's general education program, CLAS CORE. About 80 percent of all Iowa undergraduates begin their academic journey in CLAS. The college confers about 60 percent of the university's bachelor's degrees each academic year.