Yes – Please continue reading
No – Set One Up Right Now! Then please continue reading.
Now with a proper lock on your phone, do you think your phone and all the information (emails, passwords, photos, banking details etc.) in it is safe?
It doesn’t matter what your answer is I suggest you keep reading.
For a long time now mobile strategy experts, users and I’m sure a great number of conspiracy theorists have been suspicious about the security on our mobile phones. A few days ago I came across an article referring to a series of posts from Latanya Sweeney, Chief of Technology at the US Federal Trade Commission. She goes into great technical detail on how your smartphones become a fantastic tracking device for anyone interested. She also talks about how retailers are already using such technologies to better target consumers.
Quite simply put, our phones are constantly communicating with mobile towers, Bluetooth devices, WiFi networks and when they are not connected, they are continuously seeking one. This constant communication is sent out as signals, with unique identifying details like MAC Addresses that are not secured or adequately encrypted. This lack of security is exploited by a number of commercially available devices that are very easy to use, portable and come with an impressive list of features. These devices can capture your location data, intercept calls, access SMS data, emails, photo galleries and app data (banking, messaging, games etc.). They are undetectable and capture up to 20 mobiles per setup and have a very large range.
From an individual user’s point of view this is certainly concerning but it is a calculated risk we are willing to take in lieu of substantial conveniences.
From an organisation’s point of view, however, these laptop-sized devices can be set up almost anywhere. They do not need to be inside an office to be able to capture data from the phones used in that company. Now this becomes a risk an organisation cannot afford to take.
Without a robust mobile strategy in place, using your smartphone to do any work is like playing Russian roulette with yourself.
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