Hackers are increasingly sophisticated, especially with mobile devices. Let's look at the most dangerous security threats that can harm our cellphone, especially if we use them in the business we work in or are corporate.
- Fake public Wi-Fi networks
One of the most attractive ways hackers exploit the vulnerabilities of mobile devices is through fake wireless networks. Although Wi-Fi is good, especially if it's a secure private network, users will be incorrectly connected to public Wi-Fi without regard to risk. Sometimes, a public Wi-Fi network may seem trustworthy, but it's actually designed to attract users to the network. Even when users are aware of the risks of these unsecured networks, 80% still connects to them.
This practice is particularly worrying given the recent trend of employees accessing corporate applications on personal devices. To avoid disrupting an organization, there should be a strong mobile policy that restricts employees' access to business data through public Wi-Fi.
- Malware-Ridden Applications
There are many types of mobile malware and ways that hackers mislead users to become infected. 2019, some mobile applications represent one of the potential threats they carry malware.
Often, at times, employees download applications to their mobile phones that they consider to come from trusted companies. However, the applications really are false applications disguised as legitimate and of course contain malware. Users probably don't understand it, but they still download it, enter their personal information, and are infected with malware.
There have been thousands of cases of malware online, and some of them have millions of downloads. A recent report found that attacks by so-called fake applications have increased by 300%. Businesses should prevent employees from downloading applications from untrusted sources.
- Data leakage
Mobile devices are prone to data leakage and hackers are trying to take advantage of it. The hard part about data leakage is that there could be multiple causes for it. Sometimes, corporate mobile applications can be "leaky". There are also personal applications who inadvertently transmit in person or corporate data to a remote server. Employee negligence (or the case of a disgruntled employee) is sometimes the fault, with employees sending electronically sensitive data to a recipient outside the organization or transferring business data to a public cloud instead of a private cloud.
Data leakage is one of the biggest threats to 2019's mobile security, and businesses must be equipped with the right tools to prevent it. Some solutions allow organizations to interrupt processes in applications that lead to data leakage. Other organizations limit the permissions for applications or certain files to limit data leakage.
- SMiShing (SMS - Phishing)
Hackers have relied on phishing scams to steal personal and business data. A common example includes fake emails where users reveal incorrect details, leading to the theft of sensitive information.
On mobile devices, phishing scams are taking shape SMS or text messages that trick users into revealing details, such as passwords. Known as SMiShing, this means that users receive a message urging them to call a phone number. When the user calls, the phone data is easily exported. Both the user and the organization may not even be aware of the breach, especially if there is no security software used on the mobile device.
The best defense from SMiShing is to train users not to receive or make calls to unknown numbers that send text messages to their cellphone, especially if the phone number looks suspicious.
As one of the fastest growing mobile security threats in 2019, cryptojacking is so new that there is a good chance that some mobility leaders may not know it. Cryptojacking involves them hacker exploiting someone else's device for cryptomining. In the meantime, the user is of course not aware that this is happening on his mobile phone.
The device's so-called cryptomining affects technology and could reduce the battery life and overall performance of the device. It can also cause overheating and physical damage to the appliances. Since many employees depend on their cellphone for work, this is very worrying.
Cryptojacking started with malicious mining applications, though these applications have been banned from stores. However, mobile websites could be the next target. There is not a strong solution for encryption, so businesses should train employees to avoid suspicious websites and applications.