Last week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Ericsson announced plans with business and technology partner Cisco to support 3 Italia’s mobile IP backbone network transformation. The two industry leaders will combine their expertise to deploy and integrate a variety of technologies and services that will meet 3 Italia’s increasing data traffic demands and pave the way for 5G.


This exciting news comes on the heels of EANTC’s testing that definitively validated Cisco’s threat-centric security solutions for service providers. Ericsson has managed 3 Italia’s network and IT environments for more than a decade. The partnership with Cisco led to the selection of Cisco’s Firepower 9300 security appliance and Cisco state-of-of-the-art router technology to build-out 3 Italia’s IP backbone network. Firepower 9300 will be deployed to protect 3 Italia’s mobile evolved packet core (EPC) from growing global cyber threats and to improve network performance and service stability.

With the evolution to 4G and LTE and in the future 5G, mobile network architectures are becoming more IP-based. These new technologies increase the attack surface, opening mobile networks, devices, and customers to a host of sophisticated threats. Adding to the challenge, recent innovations including small cells, VoLTE, VoWiFi, combined with the business imperative to deliver services rapidly, necessitate securing critical interfaces with the EPC.

The Firepower 9300 is a carrier-grade multi-service security platform that enables mobile service providers to protect the Gi-LAN mobile infrastructure and network edges that are the most vulnerable to attack.

  • Gi/SGi: to protect against Internet attacks.
  • S1:  to protect LTE backhaul traffic and network access.
  • SP WiFi: to protect the signaling network and the subscriber database across multiple interfaces.
  • SWu: to protect the EPC from untrusted Wi-Fi access and protect the ePDG from VoWiFi.
  • S8: to protect connectivity with other roaming networks.

The Firepower 9300 is the ideal security platform for mobile service providers that demand the highest performance. With Cisco’s approach, 3 Italia can help protect both themselves and their customers from cyber attacks with scalable, intelligent, and adaptive threat-centric security.

The Ericsson and Cisco partnership offers customers like 3 Italia the best of both companies: routing, data center, networking, security, cloud, mobility, management and control, and global services capabilities.

Scot Gardner, Vice President, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, Cisco Systems says: “We are honored to be a part of 3 Italia’s network transformation and, in our collaboration with Ericsson, assisting them in not only keeping up with their customers’ increasing demand for their services but also surpassing their expectations for quality as well.”

Read the full press release from Ericsson. To learn more about Cisco security products visit: Firepower 9300 and SP Security Solutions.


Sam Rastogi

Senior Product & Solutions Marketing Manager