August 6th, 2020
Since the invention of the steam locomotive, the technology in the field of railway transportation has been continuously developed. Compared with the Blucher locomotive with a top speed of only 6.4 kilometers per hour in 1814, the CRH EMU train "Harmony", which was put into use on April 18, 2007, has been able to achieve a running speed of more than 200 kilometers per hour and a maximum of 350 kilometers per hour. However, the rapid development of railway technology not only allows passengers to enjoy high-speed and comfortable services, but also brings a series of safety challenges.
This article mainly studies the information security of railway train systems, and will involve the three major components of railway infrastructure, namely Siemens Railway Automation System (Section 2), Computer Interlocking (Section 3) and GSM-R SIM Card (Section 4) . In addition, E Security will also discuss the consequences of information security attacks on trains (Section 5) and the two previous attacks on railway infrastructure (Section 6). Today I mainly talk about GSM-R SIM card.
Some train operators need to use GSM-R SIM cards to ensure that the train is connected to the control center. Although most GSM-R SIM cards use encryption, hackers can use GSM jammers to block the communication channel between the train and the control center. The GSM signal blocker can prevent the mobile phone from receiving signals from the base station normally. Although the use of GSM jammers is prohibited in most areas of the world, such devices can still be easily purchased through online channels. GSM jammers are mainly used in schools (to prevent students from cheating in examination rooms), prisons (to prevent prisoners and visitors from communicating illegally) and movie theaters (to prevent telephone ringing from interfering with watching movies), etc. According to safety researchers, trains within the European Train Control System (ETCS) will automatically stop when the communication link with the control center is interrupted. Therefore, by using a GSM jammer, hackers can force a train to stop.
Another big problem related to GSM-R SIM cards is that users often rarely change their default PIN code, which is 1234. 1234 is currently the most widely used default PIN code, and the second most popular PIN codes are 1111 and 0000. . Hackers can easily guess the content of the PIN code and use this to access the train or control center. In order to avoid such information security attacks, users of GSM-R SIM cards should use random PIN codes as soon as possible. In addition, using a 6-digit PIN code is much safer than a 4-digit PIN code.
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