When mobile and cyber security get mentioned in the President’s State of the Union address, it’s obvious just how big the threat really is. With both world leaders and Fortune 500 execs realizing just how critical it is for them to keep a much closer watch on their cyber security strategies, we’re definitely in for an exciting 2015. In other news, there’s a surprisingly simple new threat to Android, as well as some interesting new iOS stats. We’ll help you read between the lines.
Cyber Security Has Become a Top Issue for Politicians and Executives
The dangers of breaches and global cybersecurity initiatives have been major topics this week. Both were highlighted at at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland and in speeches made by President Barack Obama, including the State of the Union address.
With data breaches rising steadily, an increasing number of enterprises and private customers are having to deal with the fallout of significant mobile and desktop attacks. President Obama has proposed new laws that could become the standard set of rules for how US companies protect customer’s data in the aftermath of a breach. There are already criticisms of Obama’s plan, but it’s a start. In Davos, executives discussed just how little ability companies have to either measure or mitigate cyber risks.
Why this is Significant?
It’s clear that 2014 was a defining year in the cyber security timeline. The steadily growing number of threats to mobile devices is a major part of that. Both of these events are positive developments that recognize just how big a threat this is.
Android Lock Screen Can Be Bypassed by Fast Tapping
A researcher has posted details of a vulnerability he discovered which could enable an attacker with physical access to a locked device to “..launch malicious programs, download personal files or even root the phone”.
The post only mentions the LG G3 as being vulnerable, but it’s important to note that the device was running Lollipop, the newest version of Android. During a brief period time, the researcher managed to both run programs and change settings by quickly tapping on the screen.
Why is this significant?
We’re not sure how isolated this issue is and we’ll be keeping an eye out for details. This is a perfect example of just how wide the range of mobile threats is. It’s not always about seriously complicated malware – in some cases it can end up being down to finger dexterity.
iOS 8 Adoption Rates Have Slowed to a Crawl
In new statistics published by Apple, it’s become apparent that the adoption rates of iOS 8 have dropped, rather suddenly. According to Apple, 69% of active iOS devices are now using iOS 8, an increase of just 1% since January 5 when Apple last shared iOS 8 adoption stats. The other 31% is split between iOS 7 (28%) and lower versions (iOS 6 and below – 3%).
We recently discussed how Google is no longer providing security updates for older versions of Android, leaving these devices vulnerable to threats. The same could also be the case for Apple. Now that the holidays are over, the number of new iPhone 6’s (that come with iOS 8 installed) is going to drop. Although fragmentation isn’t as big an issue as in the world of Android, this could still eventually pose some form of security risk.
Why is this significant?
It’s no secret that older iPhones don’t run the new versions of iOS. Many people are other reluctant to upgrade their OS or don’t even know that it’s an option. With new security updates only being released for the latest version – many users might be left out in the cold.