Case Study: Zong GMLC

GMLC (Gateway Mobile Location Center) is a telecom node that provides the functionality required to support location-based services (LBS). A single Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN) can have multiple GMLCs. This functionality is integrated in 2G and 3G through SIGTRAN and through DIAMETER in 4G and LTE networks.

GMLC can be integrated with LBS to locate any user at a given time that is connected to the network. It can provide network services and authorized third parties with standardized subscriber location information access.

The GMLC may request routing information from the HLR (Home Location register) or HSS (Home Subscriber Server). After performing registration authorization, it sends positioning requests to either the VMSC (Visited Mobile Switching Centre), SGSN (Serving GPRS Support Node) MSC (Mobile Switching Centre) Server or MME (Mobility Management Entity) and receives final location estimates from the corresponding network node.

Some real time applications of GMLC can include the use of location services in smart weather reporting. GMLC can also improve advertisements by pushing area related advertisements. It can also help telecom companies to generate mobile alerts when a user is in a specific area or to introduce tracking e.g., fleet tracking. The location information can also be of prime importance to LEAs, emergency situations such as medical help, accidental reporting etc.

The Requirement:

Many of our clients are in such business where location of their employees and clients is an essential information. Telecom operators like Zong can offer a variety of Location Based Services (LBS) and enhance the experience of their users to a new level. M.M. entered into an agreement with Zong to offer a complete E2E solution for integrating GMLC into their network. The broad requirements included

  • Subscriber Locations

  • Middleware integration

  • Statistical monitoring and logging

  • APIs integration

  • Secure service

  • Access portal

  • ACL (Access Control Lists) implementation

The Solution:

M.M. successfully delivered the solution to one of the largest operators in Pakistan with more than 30 million subscribers. Apart from integrating the GMLC node, owing to the high sensitivity of location information – the challenge was to develop a system that met security requirements associated with the integration of this node.

Our E2E system includes a user-friendly web portal with right based user creation, system monitoring dashboard, white listing, blacklisting, logs maintenance and integration with APIs. The solution has complete redundancy implemented at each level to offer 100% availability.

The solution offers

  1. Access Portal: A user-friendly yet secure access portal

  2. User roles management: User definition through middleware and role assignment

  3. White Listing Capability: Normal users can fetch the locations of subscribers white-listed for them only

  4. Black Listing Capability: Subscribers whose location information cannot be accessed by anyone

  5. Monitoring Services: Overall and user level monitoring, admin users can view the activity of all however normal users can monitor their own activity only

  6. Logging capability

  7. Maintaining Access Control List (ACL)

  8. Integration of the solution.

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