NISTIR 8071 (Draft)

LTE Architecture Overview and Security Analysis

Date Published: April 2016
Comments Due: June 1, 2016 (public comment period is CLOSED)
Email Questions to:


Jeffrey Cichonski (NIST), Joshua Franklin (NIST), Michael Bartock (NIST)


NIST invites comments on Draft NIST Internal Report (NISTIR) 8071, LTE Architecture Overview and Security Analysis. Cellular technology plays an increasingly large role in society as it has become the primary portal to the Internet for a large segment of the population. One of the main drivers making this change possible is the deployment of 4th generation (4G) Long Term Evolution (LTE) cellular technologies. This document serves as a guide to the fundamentals of how LTE networks operate and explores the LTE security architecture. This is followed by an analysis of the threats posed to LTE networks and supporting mitigations. This document introduces high-level LTE concepts and discusses technical LTE security mechanisms in detail. Technical readers are expected to understand fundamental networking concepts and general network security. It is intended to assist those evaluating, adopting, and operating LTE networks, specifically telecommunications engineers, system administrators, cybersecurity practitioners, and security researchers.



Long Term Evolution; 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP); LTE; telecommunications; wireless; networking; cellular security
Control Families

System and Communications Protection


Draft NISTIR 8071

Supplemental Material:
None available

Document History:
04/12/16: NISTIR 8071 (Draft)
11/21/16: SP 800-187 (Draft)



communications & wireless