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Get Smart: Targeting Phone Security Flaws

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As mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers become increasingly popular, computer researchers and hackers are discovering more security holes. Data from the National Vulnerability Database shows that last year security experts identified 30 security flaws in the software and operating systems of smartphones made by Apple, Nokia, and Research in Motion, nearly twice as many as the year before.

"Manufacturers are not necessarily thinking of abuses and vulnerabilities," says Purdue University professor Eugene H. Spafford. "Instead, they are thinking of the opportunities and how to push adoption."

Risk Management info graphic  Credit: The Wall Street Journal
The National Vulnerability Database also reveals that vulnerabilities in the networks and applications that run on mobile devices are on the rise. For example, the mobile version of Apple's Safari browser had 22 vulnerabilities, up from five in 2008.

Smartphone manufacturers try to keep out hackers using sandboxing techniques, which prevent third-party applications from accessing specific data. But Swiss software engineer Nicolas Seriot recently published a paper indicating that such systems can be breached.

From The Wall Street Journal
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Abstracts Copyright © 2010 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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