Texas A&M Center Receives Homeland Security Funding to Develop Secure Data and Voice Network

Texas A&M Internet 2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC) was recently awarded a $1.1 million grant to develop a secure data and voice network architecture that supports secure landline-to-landline, landline-to-mobile and mobile-to-mobile communications. The grant is part of the newly launched Secure and Resilient Mobile Network Infrastructure (SRMNI) project, a joint research and development program of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).

Managed by S&T’s Mobile Security R&D Program, the project addresses CISA’s top priorities: securing the mobile supply chain as well as critical mobile network infrastructure, including the newly launched fifth generation (5G) mobile network.

Dr. Walt Magnussen is the director of Texas A&M ITEC and is the Principal Investigator (PI) for Texas A&M’s secure voice network architecture project. ITEC is leading the effort in partnership with co-PIs Henning Schulzrinne of Columbia University and Eman Hammad of Texas A&M University Commerce.

“Working in collaboration with leading experts like Drs. Schulzrinne and Hammad, we are developing a testbed and demonstrating how existing commercial voice systems from leading service providers and enterprise equipment manufacturers can be used to build a secure and interoperable interagency voice communications service,” Magnussen explains. “By addressing both legacy and emerging technologies such as 5G, we are designing a solution that can be implemented across agencies and, with relatively small investment, fortify unclassified government communications.”

Since its inception in 2004, Texas A&M ITEC has received funding from DHS, Department of Transportation, Department of Justice, National Institute of Standards and Technology, State of Texas and industry. Texas A&M ITEC is one of only four Internet 2 centers in the world, and focuses on Voice Over Internet Protocol deployment initiatives, information assurance, and communications interoperability in public safety, transportation and defense.