Risk
3/26/2011
11:57 AM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
50%
50%

Shocker! (Not Really): Users Apathetic When It Comes To Mobile Security

Survey conducted by the Ponemon Institute shows just how lax users really are when it comes to securing their smartphone devices.

Survey conducted by the Ponemon Institute shows just how lax users really are when it comes to securing their smartphone devices.The Ponemon Institute released its Smartphone Security Survey: A Study of U.S. Consumers [.pdf], which was sponsored by anti-virus vendor AVG Technologies. The stated goal of the survey was to understand users' perceptions about potential smartphone privacy and security risks. They surveyed 734 smartphone owners over the age of 18.

Here are a few things uncovered in the report:

Most people - 84 percent - use their smartphone for both personal and work.

In addition to using it as a phone, 89 percent use their smartphone for personal email and 82 percent use it for business email.

Forty-two percent of consumers who use social networking apps say they allow smartphone versions of well-known social networking applications such as Facebook to access the same key chains, passwords and log-ins that they use of their desktops, laptops or tablet.

Despite security risks, less than half of consumers use keypad locks or passwords to secure their smartphones.

This highlights the dangers with the consumerization of IT in the enterprise. Not only is the data at jeopardy being stored unencrypted, unprotected on the smartphone - when the employee quits or is terminated from their job they're likely to keep any corporate data on their phone. The risk is exponentially increased when you consider many users are probably using cloud-based storage services (not sanctioned or managed by the business) that they can access from their phone - even after they're terminated or quit.

Situations like this pose a serious challenge to businesses that what to provide some level of device freedom to their employees - but still maintain some semblance of control over data.

If your business is facing similar situations, we'd be interested in learning how you're managing it.

For business and security observations throughout the day, find George on Twitter as @georgevhulme.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: Janice, I think I've got a message from the code father!
Current Issue
Security Operations and IT Operations: Finding the Path to Collaboration
A wide gulf has emerged between SOC and NOC teams that's keeping both of them from assuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of IT systems. Here's how experts think it should be bridged.
Flash Poll
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
The transition from DevOps to SecDevOps is combining with the move toward cloud computing to create new challenges - and new opportunities - for the information security team. Download this report, to learn about the new best practices for secure application development.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
In past years, security researchers have discovered ways to hack cars, medical devices, automated teller machines, and many other targets. Dark Reading Executive Editor Kelly Jackson Higgins hosts researcher Samy Kamkar and Levi Gundert, vice president of threat intelligence at Recorded Future, to discuss some of 2016's most unusual and creative hacks by white hats, and what these new vulnerabilities might mean for the coming year.