The Truth about Mobile Devices
When the first mobile phones hit the market, there was such a huge euphoria and with every new release of particular brand, that euphoria seems to have dissipated. And yet it is unfathomable for anyone to be without one in this day and age as without one would mean one is technology backward or obsolete.
But the real truth of the matter is though mobile technology and devices has helped the world come closer in terms of communication and also reduced the cost of such communication, the risks of using such devices are ever increasing. We are not touching here the medical harm that radiation from the devices has on our general well being. But more about the vulnerability of the devices itself and our information on them.
Following are things to consider before buying the next version of the latest smartphone. Will make you wonder if it is a smart thing to do in the first place.
- A piece of software is as good as the updates to bugs and vulnerabilities and not just the features. So if you are unware that patches to the android operating system that powers most mobile devices is “pushed” not by a single entity but by the device manufacturers. What this means is that though your friend may be having a similar smartphone, it may not necessarily mean that both of your phones have the same patches. This keeps the door open for hackers to penetrate any one of your friends smartphones to get into yours.
- Though most desktop operating system such as Windows XP publicly announce when they will stop support, one never knows when a mobile device manufacturer has stopped supporting the device. A phone that was purchased couple of years back may be so obsolete from the hardware and software point of view for the manufacturer that the device may not get any updates at all.
- Most mobile users are inconvenienced by security features such as password lock or fingerprint scanners. Most mobile devices make available a lot of security features but rarely make it enforceable for the users thus making the devices practically as insecure as the door of your house without locks.
- A lot of techy mobile users tinker around with their smart devices and try to jailbreak them or install apps directly downloadable which may prove to be the most risky option as there would be no public information on their vulnerabilities.
- Most mobile devices are not encrypted (unless you go for the encryption option in the settings) and thus when using a WiFi network that is public (sometimes used by law enforcement called stingrays) a hacker could get into your phone and steal information or install a tracking piece of software that will enable them to even listen to every word you speak on the phone.
- There is a general impression one gets when using a personal device such as a smartphone and that is what you do with it remains personal. So one may assume that the text message that is sent to a colleague may be private this way and which is actually a false sense of security or privacy. Unless the users make use of certain encryption tools that encrypt these messages at source, on transit and on receipt, the same can be accessed by those who may get a hold on any one of the phones.
The mobile device was invented for communication from anywhere but with the patchy range of services available it is not still the USP though the same has improved over the years. The smartphone is a different breed all together. And smart people should know how to use it well before getting one.