Wireless Security Research

Consumers, commercial industry, first responders, and the government are adopting wireless services ranging from social networks to location-based services and high-speed data communications at an ever-increasing rate. This virtually invisible, critical network plays a vital role in commerce, public safety, and increasingly, national security.

As an internationally recognized leader in control systems cyber security and grid resilience, INL is uniquely positioned to study, model and perform unbiased, industrial-scale research and demonstrations to illustrate the impacts of wireless degradation or failures involving industrial processes and critical infrastructure.

Wireless Test Bed Idaho


INL’s vast wireless and cyber security capabilities and expertise enable industry, academia, government and public safety to conduct:

  • Real-time spectrum and network research associated with spectrum use and allocation
  • Encryption and authentication studies for secure communications adoption and deployment
  • Wireless signal propagation modeling, testing and analysis
  • Technology application studies and the development of appropriate concepts of operation

Wireless Security Institute


Idaho National Laboratory has established the INL Wireless Security Institute to lead and coordinate government, academic, and private industry research efforts fostering more secure and reliable 5G wireless technology. The institute draws on INL’s extensive expertise and unique facilities that have been used for nearly two decades to analyze, design, test, and improve cellular, radio, and satellite communication systems for government agencies and global wireless communication companies.


Spectrum Innovation (WSCOMM)


At INL our researchers are supporting directed research and development, emerging spectrum sharing technology, engineering analyses, and technology testing, to support the acceleration of 5G technology and its secure use. INL researchers have created multiple waveforms and novel spectrum-analysis systems. Two examples are:

  • Wireless Spectrum Communications technology; and
  • Wireless Radio Frequency Signal Identification and Protocol Reverse Engineering technology


Wireless radio Frequency signal Identification and protocol Reverse Engineering (WiFIRE)

5G wireless technology, idaho National Laboratory

WiFIRE helps combat wireless attacks by monitoring wireless networks in real time, giving users the ability to respond to security breaches as they are occurring. Should it detect rogue devices, WiFIRE provides security measures like alerting law enforcement personnel, blocking unwanted data transmission, starting data and/or video recording for potential legal use, and even locating intruders before damage is done. The technology helps protect the nation’s critical infrastructure, making attacks on the power grid and water supply increasingly difficult.


Wireless Test Beds

Wireless Test Bed Idaho

INL’s Wireless Test Bed provides industrial/commercial and academic users access to the full capacity of INL’s wireless resources. With suitable sponsorship, academic institutions interested in openly published work may perform research, experimentation and testing at minimal cost.

INL personnel are leading efforts in standards committees and special interest groups regarding wireless innovation; public safety and disaster recovery communications; spectrum sharing research databases and formats; and security vulnerabilities in commercial wireless systems.