Smartphone Data Vulnerable to Base Station Spoof

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Like the controversial Firesheep, a new hack shows the insecurity of wireless networks by sending out a jamming signal that blocks 3G connections, tricking some smartphones into automatically downgrading to a vulnerable 2G protocol. The problem is that this is a trick for hackers to possibly steal your data. As this Forbes blog points out, it can be used to “intercept the data sent to and from smartphones that run Android, iOS, Windows Mobile and other operating systems, practically any laptop or tablet that can connect to the Internet via a 2G cell connection, or spy on surveillance cameras or industrial control systems that use those connections.” The Forbes article adds that this hack can be defeated by simply using an encrypted connection.

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Elaine Rigoli

Elaine Rigoli is PRIVATE WiFi’s manager of digital content strategy.