Security is the most important building block in any OS’s success. Everyone’s greatest concern is to secure personal information and private data. Smartphones are occupying most of the mobile market shares and will possibly replace all the ordinary phones in coming few years. Similarly mobile computing and tablets are also becoming popular. That is the most attractive and appealing scenario. Blackberry, Android, Windows Mobile and Apple’s iOS, everyone is claiming their operating system as word’s most secure OS, but reality is bit bitter.
Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS are most popular and widely used mobile operating systems in the world. Apple has attended Black Hat conference and unfortunately failed to prove its iOS as the most secure operating system. Android is at the top of mobile market and have more market shares than any other mobile OS. However, there are almost 20,000 or more Android applications reportedly having malware that can put your privacy in jeopardy.
There are also few reported apps on both Android and iOS that is capable of spamming, one of the most popular is “Find and Call.” It is being reported by an application named as Clueful that millions of application at Apple’s App Store does not perform proper encryption while transmitting your data. Although, these statistics are not authentic enough because Apple has removed Clueful from App Store, but still questionable.
A research has been conducted at University of Luxembourg by Ralf-Philipp Weimann, who is researching on GPS (Global Positioning System). According to him, The GPS technology itself is not causing any trouble instead it is A-GPS (Assisted Global Positioning System) that most of the latest Smartphones are equipped with. A-GPS is a new and under development technology that is why it has soft spots that let caught into your device, let them track your location, grab your passwords/logins and even sometime attacker could control your whole device and can access your stored data.
Whenever you use a location-based application or to find any place (hospital, fuel station, etc.) nearby, your application (all most all the location-based applicatyion) asks your network provider for estimated location and use GPS (your device’s built-in hardware) status and transmits your GPS readings over a “non-secure data link.” By doing some hardware and/or software exploits caught can get these messages containing your location and other information. Ralf-Philipp Weimann said that these messages went directly to CPU (processor) rather than GPS or Mobile Radio Systems, so, remote takeover of your device is possible via malware code.
Android is a Linux-based open-source platform by Google, who is spending hundreds of millions to secure their users from the curse. Newly released Android Jelly Bean is remarkably better than earlier in terms of security and encryption to prevent malicious codes.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has funded to develop X-Ray, application for Android that scan your device and indentify if any vulnerability found. Microsoft warns that there is a fake Skype malware for android, which sent premium sms. Apple is also highly concerned about security and privacy of users.
I love movies belonging to action, crime and si-fi genre, So, I am thinking that A-GPS vulnerability could be a possible way for security agencies to trace location of criminals. What do you think? Write below in the comment box.