Smartphones: The Unsecured Horizon

Tue, Sep 18, 2012, by Ethan007

Browsers

We all love our smartphones. Many of us claim that we simply could not survive a day without them. They are used for e-mail, business transactions, banking, and of course, talking to one another. There are even companies out there who would like to see all commercial transactions being conducted via apps on a smartphone that are linked to debit and credit card accounts.

We all love our smartphones. Many of us claim that we simply could not survive a day without them. They are used for e-mail, business transactions, banking, and of course, talking to one another. There are even companies out there who would like to see all commercial transactions being conducted via apps on a smartphone that are linked to debit and credit card accounts. Using smartphones in this way means that critical information such as bank account numbers, birth dates, passwords, and in some cases, social security numbers are all potentially floating around in the air. The potential content in radio waves is more than enough information for a slightly competent hacker to steal your identity or worse. So it is no surprise that the forefront of internet security is related to securing mobile devices.

The Security Race

It is likely that you are aware of the latest compromise to the iPhone; the phone previously thought to be impervious to hacking. This case is a stellar example of the fact that no software is inherently “un-hackable.” The information game is in essence a race where companies and those with less than honest intentions are competing. Companies build what they believe to be secure systems, only to have hackers eventually find some weakness. From there, companies update the software or hardware to close back doors and loopholes. The race is continuous and only promises to become more heated as time goes by. What we can gather from this is that, as individuals, it is essential to stay current with security updates that are issued for apps and various internet related software. This concern is particularly relevant when it comes to using widespread software which provides bigger targets for misuse.

Securing Chrome with Outsource Potential

Google Chrome made a big splash when it hit the market. However, the android platform browser was open to attack from malicious mobile sites. The most recent release reinforces the “sandbox” technology. This means that the architecture was diversified so that the Android user ID could remain in isolation if any level of the browser was compromised. Access to hardware user Ids opens the door to gathering information from a variety of sources on the device. Seven other security flaws were mended with the help of independent contributors. Each were paid $500 per flaw reported. In addition to the security updates, new looks and enhanced user controls were added for Youtube playback.

Coffee Shops Beware

WhatsApp is a trending App for smartphones that acts as a free medium for sending and receiving messages in a variety of media formats for free over data and WIFI networks. But like any software development in its early adolescence, researchers are discovering security flaws. While connected to public WIFI, the entire account can be hijacked. Once compromised, there is no way to fully restore secure operations to the user. All of the data is a loss. The technical problem is that passwords are internally generated by the program based on MAC addresses and Android IMEI. This information is easily accessible when connected to public WIFI.

Linda Carter with her wide knowledge is one of the most sought after authors. She has an mastery over topics related to address changes. She writes for Changeofaddress.org

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