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Researchers expect hackers to prey on mobiles


My phone is doomed

Hackers are
hatching cunning plans to recruit mobile phones into botnets, according to security experts from Georgia Tech. A new report said that since mobile phones have become a lot more powerful, they are more likely to become recruits for the attacks that have bedeviled PCs.

Georgia Tech said that botnets, or networks of infected or robot PCs, are the weapons of choice when it comes to spam and "denial of service attacks." If mobile phones become absorbed in botnets, new types of moneymaking scams could be born. For example, infected phones could be programmed to call pay-per-minute 1-900 numbers or to buy ringtones from companies set up by the criminals.

A big appeal of cell phones for hackers is that the devices are generally always on, they're sending and receiving more data, and have poor security. Any antivirus software would suck up massive amounts of battery life, which is a killer on a mobile device. Once hackers learn how the mobile networks work and adapt their attacks then mobile phones could be wide open.

The only thing that is stopping them is mobile phone operators have tighter control over their networks, which means they could shut down the lines of communication between infected phones much easier.
Last modified on 16 October 2008
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