Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Mobile

12/12/2017
09:45 AM
50%
50%

Employees on Public WiFi Rarely Face Man-in-the-Middle Attacks

Employees' corporate mobile devices are connected to WiFi networks on average 74% of the time.

While a majority of corporate employees connect their corporate mobile devices to WiFi networks, only a small percentage face man-in-the-middle attacks, a report released today finds.

Wandera's WiFi Mobile Security Report, based on a November sample of 100,000 corporate mobile devices on its network, revealed:

-74% of wireless data usage on average relies on WiFi

-12% of WiFi hotspots used by employees are open, lacking encryption

-4% of corporate mobile devices came into contact with a man-in-the-middle attack

"Even though it was 4% in November, it's usually about this level day in and day out," says Dan Cuddeford, Wandera's director of sales engineering. "Despite what people think, your phone is not constantly being attacked. If you go to Starbucks, an attacker cannot attack all the devices. They have to have a stronger signal than those they are attacking."

The man-in-the-middle attacks ranged from intercepting data leaks to compromising the device's trust model, the report notes.

And although 12% of employees use unsecure WiFi hotspots, the report notes it could have been worse, given 24.7% of WiFi hotspots worldwide use no encryption. These results hint to the possibility employees are taking some care in avoiding unsecure hotspots, the report states.

WiFi Over Cellular

Cellular networks, says Cuddeford, are far safer than WiFi, yet employees connect their corporate mobile devices to these networks only 26% of the time.

"We have never seen man-in-the-middle attacks on cellular networks in the wild. It could happen in theory, but it is so much easier for attackers to do a WiFi attack that they don't bother with cellular networks," Cuddeford says.

He speculated companies may be prompting employees to use WiFi as often as possible as a means to cut costs on roaming charges that would be incurred if they were connected to cellular networks.

"The takeaway for CISOs is more of their mobile devices are connecting to WiFi than cellular and although the number of these devices are increasing, the number of them connecting to encrypted connections is not," Cuddeford warns.

Hotels accounted for 25% of the open WiFi hot spots employees use, followed by airports at 20%, the report states.

Whether at a hotel or airport, Cuddeford says employees should turn off their device's WiFi capabilities unless they intentionally want to connect to a hot spot. That reduces the odds their corporate mobile device will automatically connect to a spoofed WiFi network.

Related Content:

 

 

Dawn Kawamoto is an Associate Editor for Dark Reading, where she covers cybersecurity news and trends. She is an award-winning journalist who has written and edited technology, management, leadership, career, finance, and innovation stories for such publications as CNET's ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-21354
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
Pollbot is open source software which "frees its human masters from the toilsome task of polling for the state of things during the Firefox release process." In Pollbot before version 1.4.4 there is an open redirection vulnerability in the path of "https://pollbot.services.mozilla.com...
CVE-2021-21362
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
MinIO is an open-source high performance object storage service and it is API compatible with Amazon S3 cloud storage service. In MinIO before version RELEASE.2021-03-04T00-53-13Z it is possible to bypass a readOnly policy by creating a temporary 'mc share upload' URL. Everyone is impacted who uses ...
CVE-2020-4695
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
IBM API Connect V10 is impacted by insecure communications during database replication. As the data replication happens over insecure communication channels, an attacker can view unencrypted data leading to a loss of confidentiality.
CVE-2020-4903
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
IBM API Connect V10 and V2018 could allow an attacker who has intercepted a registration invitation link to impersonate the registered user or obtain sensitive information. IBM X-Force ID: 191105.
CVE-2020-5014
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
IBM DataPower Gateway V10 and V2018 could allow a local attacker with administrative privileges to execute arbitrary code on the system using a server-side requesr forgery attack. IBM X-Force ID: 193247.