A new study by the Network IPS has predicted that by 2021, mobile devices will be greatly targeted for cyber-attacks. The study also said that demand for mobile applications and services is increasing exponentially across all sectors of business, thus exposing organizations to an increased risk of attack.
The research suggested the most common security threats to mobile devices in 2021 are as follows:
Social engineering is a wide term that can include phishing, pretexting, and shoulder surfing. People will use the personal information they learn from social engineering to gain access to places or accounts an individual might have. For example, a criminal might pretend to be someone’s relative or friend and call a service provider in order to get the individual’s log-in information. In 2021, social engineering is expected to be one of the most common security threats on mobile devices.
Social engineering tactics on mobile devices are on the rise. Malware and apps on your phone can be used to harvest information such as passwords, account PINs and location data. Apps such as this are usually available through third-party app stores.
People are starting to understand that mobile devices are not only vulnerable to insecure operating systems, but also hardware vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities can be caused by buggy third party software or even something as innocent as a user dropping the device.
Data Leakage Via Malicious Apps
In the year 2021, malicious apps were a significant security threat to users. The danger was that even though users knew a specific app might be untrustworthy, they didn’t always know which one it would be . If a person downloads an unknown app from a source they don’t usually trust, then their data is at risk of being stolen.
The standard of mobile device security will likely be even lower than it is today. This is because for most consumers cyber security does not seem like a priority unless something terrible happens. People are much more likely to care about cyber safety when they feel personally attacked, but in all other cases, people tend to ignore their devices’ safety until something happens. As a result of this, the threats listed below will remain threats for years to come.
Most mobile applications will have significant security risks due to their inability to adapt with the ever-changing world of cyber security. This is because more and more apps are being made every day without concern for security vulnerabilities, and they are never updated or fixed if someone does find a vulnerability.
Unsecured Public Wifi
Mobile devices can be accessed by hackers anywhere, not just in the home or workplace. This is especially concerning for security-savvy individuals who are aware of data breaches at companies like Yahoo! and Dropbox. Hackers are able to exploit unprotected public wifi connections to steal passwords, photos, bank account information, health records, etc., from unsuspecting individuals.
Mobile devices are not the only targets of cyber criminals, however. Computers and laptops can also be hacked to access personal data. Cyber criminals often use phishing scams to trick people into opening emails that contain malicious attachments or links. Once opened, these files can give hackers backdoor access for months or years before the victim becomes aware of the breach, or even that a breach has occurred at all.
As technology makes more of our personal information accessible from multiple devices connected to the internet, cyber criminals have more ways than ever of acquiring this sensitive data. The threat of data breaches is not going away any time soon. It’s critical to educate yourself on the common security threats and the precautions you should take to prevent data loss.
Poor Password Habits
Mobile devices are vulnerable to cyber attacks that can cost you your privacy or even your life (don’t believe me? read the next paragraph). Cyber criminals are becoming more sophisticated. Their goal is to find the perfect balance between time commitment and pay-out, so they won’t waste their time cracking easy passwords or wasting resources on complicated passwords.
Many people do not take security on their mobile devices seriously, which allows malicious users to exploit these leaks for financial gain. This can be performed in a variety of ways; an example would be using malware (a type of virus that infects your computer) to obtain personal information like credit card numbers or private messages sent via social media applications.
Another example would be to remotely access your mobile device when you’re not looking, disabling the lock screen function then starting a mobile banking application in which you have saved your bank details. The cybercriminal could then transfer money from your account into theirs!
The number of people affected globally by cybercrime is estimated to reach 2.8 billion in 2021. The majority of these crimes occur on mobile devices; it’s predicted that 23% of all security incidents will target mobiles by 2021.This shows the need for awareness about threats and repercussions, and why you should consider changing your bad password habits.
Out Of Date Operating Systems
As more and more people use phones for essential tasks (such as checking their work email) it is becoming increasingly important that the devices these users hold in their hands remain safe from attack. This is especially true given that many of us carry our smartphones with us pretty much everywhere we go.
In order to ensure that the device remains safe from attack it is important to keep all software updated. Unfortunately, many users no longer update their phone’s operating system for a number of reasons – including not reading the notification when it pops up and simply forgetting. Software updates often contain vital security patches that, when left unattended, leave the phone open to external attack through malicious software. This is especially true about apps downloaded from third-party stores where users may not know whether or not they are receiving a real update.
Even though it is important for all mobile devices – including tablets and phones – to update their software, such updates are often associated with reduced performance (or what is known as ‘lag’). This has led to users finding ways around updating their phone’s operating system. To ensure that the device remains safe from attack, it is important for users to realize that this lag is a small price to pay when compared to the risks of not updating the device.
Also, users should be aware that hackers are constantly on the hunt for unpatched devices. This means that it is vital for users to update their mobile device’s software in order to prevent attacks against their phones while they are away from home or work, where it can be difficult to download updates via a desktop computer.
Mobile devices are becoming the dominant way people work, shop, and play. They’re quickly replacing desktop computers as the go to tool for everyday tasks like managing finances or processing payroll. However, it is these very features that make mobile devices an alluring prospect for cybercriminals who can find countless ways to wreak havoc on unsuspecting device owners.
It is extremely important that users remain vigilant about ensuring their mobile devices are properly protected from harm, as these vulnerabilities make your data incredibly easy to access for those with malicious intent. Stay tuned into Bayshore Interactive’s blog to learn more about cyber security and how to stay safe online.