ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

SMARTPHONE SAFETY - 1

Updated on March 7, 2013

SECURE EVERYTHING

Smartphones these days are capable of doing almost everything a low-end PC can do, which is why the growing number of smartphone users often choose to do their work directly from their phones. The increased activity on smartphones, especially involving Internet usage, has resulted in their rapidly increasing popularity as a target for privacy and security attacks. While uninformed users might surf the Web, socialize, transfer files and pay their bills from the convenience of their phones, they leave their personal information, financial information and data vulnerable to attacks.

Mobile phone threats come in many different forms and they are becoming more sophisticated. With the source code to operating systems available, it is much easier for developers to create malicious software or find ways to tap into your phone. There have already been many reported cases of attacks on phones via open Wi-Fi access points, Bluetooth connections, and applications, so it is important for users to take preventive measures to avoid being the target of an attack. There is also the most basic threat of physical theft resulting in data loss and data leakage for which also there are preventive measures.

WHAT IS THE THREAT ?

There is a range of ways to gain access to an unprotected mobile phone. Apart from open Wi-Fi networks, an experienced hacker can exploit your phone's Bluetooth connectivity, 3G access or through malicious applications. Once the attacker has access, a lack of protection or poor security settings leave your data open to a multitude of threats and attacks and the increasing use of cloud services means attackers can move through the Internet faster than even before.

The development of operating systems for different devices means the same malicious software that affected PCs can now affect your smartphone. The open nature of Android and, to a lesser extent, Windows Phone makes these OSes easier targets for viruses. Other threats include unauthorized access, increased charges through cross-service attacks, eavesdropping and SMS spamming, all of which can lead to leakage of sensitive data and information.

HOW IT'S DONE

Malware and viruses can infect a phone through e-mails, SMSs, open Wi-Fi networks and even Bluetooth connections. The greatest mode of spreading malware, however, is through applications downloads, which is of real concern specifically for Android users after a study by juniper Networks in May 2011 revealed a 400% increase in Android malware. Viruses can sometimes infect multiple files on a device and then spread across devices when files are transferred over the Internet or via Bluetooth.

Cross-service attacks are more a threat to the owner's pocket than they are to data. The availability of multiple forms of connectivity on one device means an attack carried out through one interface might give the attacker access to another. For example, an attack through your phone's wireless network interface might enable the attacker to use your phone functionality to make long-distance calls or send large volumes of messages, much like an e-mail worm that sends mass e-mails from your account.

Eavesdropping is a threat to all Internet users, irrespective of the device they are functioning from, but it is far easier for a hacker to access packets transferred between a smartphone and a server due to the lack of encryption user by mobiles. An unprotected wireless network can be manipulated to leak data packets to users other than the Intended targets.

Another method of infection is through spam SMS. While SMS spam may seem innocuous at face value, it can be quite harmful if not dealt with correctly. Most users would think the worst a spam message could do is annoy you, but clicking through to a links in an SMS could leave you vulnerable to unauthorized downloads and infection through malicious sites. Sometimes spam SMS is sent through premium charges numbers and responding to a quiz or poll can incur high billing costs.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)