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LTE Security, Second Edition by Valtteri Niemi, Wolf-Dietrich Moeller, Günther Horn, Dan Forsberg

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Chapter 15

Security for Machine-Type Communications

Machine-type communications (MTC)1 are characterized by the fact that terminals are not attended by humans. MTC have attracted tremendous interest due to the significant potential for growth inherent in envisaged applications for them, while the growth potential for human-to-human communication seems more limited, at least in developed countries.

MTC applications include:

  • Security. This does not refer to communications security, which is the topic of this book, but to issues such as surveillance systems, access control to buildings or car safety.
  • Tracking and tracing. Examples are fleet management, tracking of valuable assets, traffic information and road tolling.
  • Payment. Examples of this are electronic payment at a point of sale in a shop, and vending or gaming machines.
  • Health. This includes supporting the aged or handicapped as well as telemedicine.
  • Remote maintenance and control. Examples are sensors and vehicle diagnostics.
  • Metering. Metering can involve power, gas, water and/or heating, as well as smart grid applications.
  • Consumer devices. Examples include digital cameras and eBooks.

The subjects in this list, and most of the examples following them, were taken from Annex B of the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) requirements specification [TS22.368]. A similar list can be found in [ETSI TS 102 689], where also references to more detailed descriptions of individual use cases are given.

These applications will, ...

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