IEEE ComSoc International Communications Quality and Reliability Workshop
8 October 2020 // Virtual Conference


Keynote #1 – Voting 5G? How new networking technologies affect our democratic institutions , Harri Hursti, Nordic Innovation Labs

Abstract: With the oncoming 2020 election, the election system of the US faces once again numerous threats – foreign and domestic. And still, the system lags behind the very basic industry standards of cybersecurity. In this talk on “Voting 5G? How new networking technologies affect our democratic institutions” Harri Hursti will shed light on the unique security challenges that are faced in elections in the US and abroad. He will also discuss if the deployment of 5G will have an additional negative effect. He will demonstrate to the audience how easy the systems manipulation is and what could be done to eliminate threats.


Bio: Harri Hursti is a Founding Partner at Nordic Innovation Labs and is considered one of the most knowledgeable white hat hackers of the election technology. As the world’s foremost expert on electronic voting systems, he has conducted and co-authored studies on election systems’ vulnerabilities at the request of legislators and policy makers in five countries, including the United States. He is most known for the “Hursti Hack” in 2005 that exposed the severe lack of security on electronic voting machines. Since exposing the severe vulnerabilities, Harri has become one of the world’s leading authorities on election voting security. Harri’s efforts in protecting the future of democracy was also captured in the HBO documentary called “Hacking Democracy” which was nominated for an Emmy award for outstanding investigative journalism.

Keynote #2 – Wireless Network Insights during COVID-19, Miguel Carames, Verizon

Abstract: COVID-19 has dramatically altered how our society works, learns and communicates. User behavior changes have impacted how operators engineer and operate the wireless networks. At the same time, service providers have diverse tools available to adjust in a flexible and agile fashion. After highlighting some key network insights, this talk will focus on 4G and 5G networks as well as the underlying architectures underpinning the evolution of wireless networks such as Network Function Virtualization and analytics.


Bio: Miguel Carames is currently a Director of Network and Technology planning at Verizon. Leading a team of engineers responsible for planning, engineering and design of the Verizon wireless core network including the Evolved Packet Core (EPC), 5G Core (5GC) as well as a number of critical services including the wireless enterprise portfolio, public safety core, messaging, and OSS/BSS evolution. Miguel has 20 years of experience in the telecommunications industry and has worked in R&D in 3G (UMTS), 4G (WiMAX and LTE) and now 5G. Prior to Verizon, Miguel worked at Motorola for nine years. Miguel holds a Masters in Telecommunications by the Polytechnical University of Valencia (Spain) and is currently pursuing his MBA with the Jack Welch Management Institute. Miguel has been an active participant in multiple industry forums including multiple GSMA working groups. Miguel has been awarded 20 patents and has filed 20 more.

Keynote #3 – Measuring Performance at the Edge: How users and their networks have responded to the COVID-19 pandemic , Brian Connelly, Ookla

Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged networks like never before and has magnified the importance of understanding performance and reliability at a fine level of detail. Using data provided by millions of Speedtest users from around the globe, this talk will highlight some of the unique ways in which users have changed their behavior, and how fixed and wireless networks have responded.

Bio: Brian Connelly is the Data Science and Analytics Lead at Ookla. Using data from Ookla’s Speedtest and Downdetector apps, his team develops new metrics for mobile, broadband, and Wi-Fi networks across the globe that enable customers and consumers to uncover new insights from large, multi-faceted datasets. Prior to joining Ookla in 2017, he was a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Washington, where he led research targeting the evolution of communication and cooperative behaviors using microbial systems, computer simulations, and mathematical models. Brian has PhDs in Computer Science and Evolutionary Biology from Michigan State University and a BS in Computer Science from Purdue University. He has been a Scientific Communication Fellow at the Pacific Science Center since 2015, where he leads activities that present science and careers in science to kids and the broader community. Brian has also been a counselor with Hoosier Burn Camp, where he works with child burn survivors, since 2002.