December 19, 2006 By Gina M. Scott
For many years we have used individual technologies for specific purposes: cell phones for making calls, PDAs for data storage, MP3 players for music. But the trend toward convergence leads to security issues which may have escaped notice. Mobile devices are just as susceptible to malware as computers according to Cyber Security: What Does the Future Hold? Webinar presenter Mark Fabro, chief security scientist with Lofty Perch Inc. At the Webinar, hosted by the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center, Fabro said that there are many viruses designed specifically for infecting mobile devices, such as a recently discovered BlackBerry Trojan.
Attackers use e-mail, Internet and other messaging connections to introduce malware into mobile devices. It is also believed that attackers will begin to use screensavers, games and rogue ring tones to gain access, as well as the possibility of using Bluetooth technology. There have already been instances of malware found on certain car navigation systems which utilize Bluetooth.
People must assume that their data will be targeted -- regardless of device -- and must therefore encrypt their information.
"We get paid to be paranoid," he quipped.
Fabro presented a list of must have components for personal encryption:
Fabro explained that when discarding devices always remember:
If all else fails, or even if it doesn't, we can always take more drastic measures to keep our personal information safe. (Fabro reminds people to wear their protective eyewear when taking hammers to their cell phones).
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