What are the Risks from Mobile Eavesdropping?

Ever heard of mobile snoopware? For those affected, it’s unnerving and creates a sense of paranoia. I’ve worked with families that found spyware on their phones designed to watch their every move. The hacker, they say, turned their mobiles on and off, used the phone’s camera to take pictures, and use the speakerphone as a bug. All year long I receive emails from people who have experienced the same issues. Scary.

Mobile carrier networks are encrypted and aren’t likely to be snooped on, but they have been cracked. WiFi, on the other hand, is extremely vulnerable. There are a few ways to snoop on a mobile:

  • GPRS cracks: A phone’s 3G connection sometimes defaults to the hacker-created General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) if 3G isn’t available.
  • Bluetooth recorders: If you pair a Bluetooth headset with a phone, the sound comes through the earpiece—just as does a Bluetooth recorder sold through spy shops will. However, this often requires a hacker to have direct access to your mobile device.
  • Spyware device in hand: Snooping tools can monitor calls and texts. It’s legal when the phone’s owner installs it, such as a parent monitoring his or her kid’s phone.
  • Spyware remote install: Spyware doesn’t require physical access to the device when a user clicks an infected link or the device is on a free unsecured wireless connection.
  • Cracking encryption: Don’t worry about it unless you are a high-end executive or a government agent; in that case, anyway, you probably own a device that has advanced encryption in the hardware and software.
  • Bluetooth: Require a password to access your device and turn off Bluetooth. As always, keep the device close.
  • Spyware: Keep your device’s antivirus updated and beware of what links you click.
  • WiFi hacks: Use a virtual private network such as Hotspot Shield VPN.

Protect yourself from eavesdropping:

Robert Siciliano is an Identity Theft Expert to Hotspot Shield VPN. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen See him discussing internet and wireless security on Good Morning America. Disclosures. For Roberts FREE ebook text- SECURE Your@emailaddress -to 411247.