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Know how many security threats there are for 2011?

March 10th, 2011 | Security,Uncategorized | No Comments »
Guess what, there’s five big ones. We knew that were plenty of threats last year and we probably expected the number of threats to grow. They have. Here are the top five for this year.

Mobile Apps:

Did you know that 85% of adults in the US own a mobile phone? ( I thought that this figure seemed a bit low…) [Turns out that 90% have access to a cellphone, but only 85% actually own one. ] Anyone hear the about the Trojan Droid Dream? No? Well what it did was gain root  access to sensitive information such as a device’s ID, model number etc… This meant that the software could take control of the devices and download things that you didn’t want on your computer. Luckily, Google remotely deleted the Trojan from user’s phones before it could do any damage.

However, malware isn’t just on official app stores. Outbreaks come from repackaged apps and alternative app stores.  Due to the increase in malware in smartphones, soon you might have to have two phones: one for work and one for personal use.  So how do you protect yourself? First, be careful about what apps you install. Do some research before you install an app. Does it have a reputation? What kind of reputation does it have? Etc…

Don’t forget to read the app’s list of permissions before you download. Does it make sense for this app to have access? See if you can uncheck unwanted permissions. Does that game really need access to your camera? (If you’re an Android user, Google makes it mandatory for the list of permissions to be there. If there’s antivirus apps for your smartphone, you might want to think about getting one.

Social Networks:

You’ve all heard about Social Network scams right? Good, then I don’t have to go into very much detail. One large thing to keep in  mind is that  using  your  Facebook account  information , criminals can actually go  and  burglarize your house .  So, don’t  click  on any  suspicious  links, be wary of claims you know to be untrue and again , read exactly what the app is asking permission for.

Antivirus Software :

Since more users have become  aware  of the need for antivirus software , these  scams have been  on the rise. The scam looks like a legitimate  piece of software  and  convinces the user that the computer  has on infection. Once the user pays for the software, the program has access to the users computer  and credit  card information .  NOT GOOD  What ca you do to protect yourself? First  make  sure  you are running a current security  program that is updated frequently and never download security  software  from a popup add.


Apparently PDF’s are one of the  potentially most dangerous file formats available. Why? It’s easy to conceal malicious content in the file.   PC World give you a link to the study…but, since it’s in a PDF format, I didn’t read it. 😀  So, be careful where you get your PDF”s from.  (My university uses PDF’s often, but I’m pretty sure that they’re not infected.) Remember to run and keep  your antivirus programs updated. Also, make sure to keep your PDF reader updated. Many of the updates have important fixes.

War Games or in other words, state sponsored malware attacks, industrial espionage, etc…

For the ordinary person they may not be a threat, but if you own manage security for a business you should be paying attention.  Hacking groups have attacked sites in Egypt and Libya in support of recent protests. The group has also leaked emails from a security researcher attempting to identify their members.  How do you protect your company from all this? First, monitor the network traffic and conduct regular reviews of employee data access privileges.

All of these threats may seem scary(they do to me), but they can be mitigated by being vigilant, keeping things updated and just using common sense.

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