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What is Mobile Security?

March 8, 2018 | By admin

Mobile security is defined as the concept of protecting laptops, smartphones, tablets and a number of other portable computing devices, including the networks they connect to, from vulnerabilities and threats linked with wireless computing.

In recent years, the need for securing mobile devices has indeed increased due to the dramatic expansion of the devices in expansion and their applications. Like viruses and spyware that attack your computer, there is an extensive range of security threats capable of affecting mobile devices. These security threats can be divided into the following categories:

  • Physical threats
  • Application-based threats
  • Network threats
  • Web-based threats

Given below are a few key mobile security concerns and mobile threats your device could encounter:

Physical Threats

A smartphone or tablet is valuable because the hardware itself can be re-sold and mostly because of the personal data and corporate information, such as access to email and account credentials, it may contain.

Application-Based Threats

Downloaded applications can present several types of mobile security issues. One fundamental problem refers to mobile apps asking for too many privileges, which in fact allows them to access different data sources on the device. Generally, application-based threats can be categorized under the following categories:

  • Spyware: Spyware is used for collecting or using private data without your approval or knowledge. Data mostly targeted by spyware includes user location, private photos, browser history, email, contact list, text messages, and phone call history.
  • Malware: Even without your knowledge it is possible for malware to make charges to your phone, give an attacker control over your device, or send unasked messages to your contact list.
  • Vulnerable Applications: These are apps contain flaws capable of being exploited for malicious purposes. These vulnerabilities permit attackers to get in touch with sensitive information, stop a service from functioning correctly, download apps to your device without your knowledge, or carry out undesirable actions.
  • Privacy Threats: These threats are brought about by applications that need not be necessarily malicious, but they use or gather sensitive information that helps to perform their function.

Network Threats

Typically, mobile devices support cellular networks and also wireless networks like Bluetooth and WiFi. Threats that could be caused by both these networks include:

  • Wi-Fi Sniffing: Intercepts data as it is traveling via the air between the WiFi access point and the device. A number of web pages and applications fail to use proper security measures, sending unencrypted data across the network that can be easily read by someone who is grabbing data as it travels.
  • Network Exploits: Take advantage of defects in the mobile operating system or other software that works on cellular or local networks. After getting connected, they are capable of installing malware on your mobile phone without your knowledge.

Web-Based Threats

Web-based threats present persistent issues for mobile devices since these devices are constantly connected to the Internet and very often used for accessing web-based services.

  1. Browser exploits take advantage of dangers in your mobile web browser or software introduced by the browser such as an image viewer, PDF reader, or a Flash player. A browser exploit gets activated by just visiting an unsafe web page. This activation will result in installing malware or performing other actions on your device.
  2. Drive-by downloads are capable of automatically downloading an application each time you visit a web page.
  3. Phishing scams use Facebook, Twitter, text messages, and email to send you links to websites that are specifically designed for tricking you into providing information like account numbers or passwords. You will very often find these sites and messages to be extremely different to distinguish from those of your legitimate sources.

 

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