Microsoft recently published a security blog that warned about a sophisticated new ransomware variant. Not, as you might expect, ransomware that impacts users of the Windows operating system, though. Nope, instead, this was a warning for Android users.
The discovery of a context-aware machine learning code module in the MalLocker.B certainly deserves the sophisticated tag. However, that module has yet to be activated, and more of that in a moment. What has grabbed the attention of Android users who have read the various reports online, it would seem, is the fact that MalLocker.B can effectively brick phones only with a press of the home button when answering a call. But how true is that, and how worried should Android smartphone users actually be?
First things first, this is a fascinating and highly detailed bit of technical blogging from the Microsoft security folk. As such, that is to be welcomed, as is all information that helps us understand how threats, including ransomware, are evolving. Most users, however, will not have read that report for the very same reason: it’s a technical deep dive. That’s a shame, but not unsurprising. The job of journalists and reporters in the information security space is to explain such highly technical revelations in a way that can be absorbed by almost anyone regardless of their level of technical understanding.
On the whole, I think ‘we’ do a pretty decent job of that, and the MalLocker.B reporting is no exception. Apart from one thing: my inbox would suggest that many readers are coming away with the idea that their Android smartphones are in danger of being bricked simply because they have pressed the home button in response to an incoming call. That is
(Bloomberg) — Britain’s deals watchdog said it’s “only right” that it gets to review a tie-up between Liberty Global Plc and Telefonica SA in the nation, setting up a regulatory tussle with the European Union as the U.K. and EU leaders clash over their future relationship.
The Competition and Markets Authority asked the European Commission to transfer a probe into Liberty Global’s plan to merge its Virgin Media unit with Telefonica’s O2 in the U.K. The EU’s competition regulator, which normally clings on tightly to investigations of telecom deals, acknowledged the request, pushing back its deadline to rule on the deal until Nov. 19
“As the merger will only impact U.K. consumers — and any effects would only be felt after the end of the transition period — it is only right for the CMA to request it back,” CMA Chief Executive Officer Andrea Coscelli said in an emailed statement on Thursday.
Liberty Global sought European Commission approval for the transaction last week. EU regulators can transfer a review to smaller national authorities if they think they are best placed to make a decision. The EU has rarely handed back mobile-phone deals and has often taken a harsh line on telecoms consolidation. Although Britain quit the EU earlier this year, EU law still applies and large deals are handled by the Brussels-based authority during a transition period until
Drivers are More Likely to Wear a Mask Than Drive Without Using a Cell Phone, According to Survey From National Safety Council and TRUCE Software
ITASCA, Ill., Oct. 6, 2020
During the 10th anniversary of Distracted Driving Awareness Month, NSC and TRUCE find far too many risky behaviors – and an unwillingness to let them go
ITASCA, Ill., Oct. 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — According to a survey released today by the National Safety Council and TRUCE Software, drivers remain persistently unable to disconnect behind the wheel, even 10 years after Distracted Driving Awareness Month brought increased attention to a persistent roadway killer, and nearly all states have some form of legislation prohibiting certain types of distractions.
In the survey of 2,001 registered drivers ages 25 and older across the country, 76% of respondents said they are rightly “very willing” to wear a mask in public – but just 62% are “very willing” to obey a state law preventing cell phone use. The finding speaks to a long-standing behavior change dilemma: Many people will correctly take steps to mitigate immediate risks to their safety – especially if they believe the measure will be temporary, such as wearing a mask – but widespread behavior change that can drive down chronic safety incidents, such as motor vehicle crashes, often takes much longer.
Since October is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, NSC and the observation’s lead sponsor TRUCE – a company dedicated to decreasing workplace distraction and improving worker safety – are urging employers to enact distracted driving policies at their workplaces to compensate for many drivers’ unwillingness to adhere to state laws. Further,
- 72% of organizations plan to assess or implement Zero Trust capabilities in some capacity in 2020 according to Pulse Secures’ 2020 Zero Trust Progress Report.
- 39% of organizations admitted to suffering a security compromise involving a mobile device this year, up from 33% in the latest Verizon Mobile Security Index Report.
- 220% increase in time spent in business apps in the first half of 2020 compared to 2019 according to App Annie’s State of Mobile 2020 Report reflects how phones are the new platform of choice.
- Cloud Security is the smallest, fastest-growing cybersecurity market segment with market size of $439M last year, projected to grow 33% this year according to Gartner.
Every business is relying on their employees to get work done and drive revenue using the most pervasive, yet porous device they have. Phones are the fastest growing threat surface and the platform of choice for many of the 42% of the U.S. labor force is working from home full-time according to a recent Sanford University study. Ericcson’s Consumer & IndustryLab recently looked at how the pandemic is affecting mobile device and app usage and shared it in the report, Keeping Consumers Connected, identifying the fast growth zone of mobile applications shown below:
Closing Your Phone’s Zero Trust Gap
Let’s face it, the majority of phones employees rely on today to do their jobs aren’t protected from advanced breach, malware, QR code or phishing attempts. CIOs and CISOs tell me their biggest concern are breaches that start on mobile devices and go undetected for months because
It’s October, and Apple’s entering uncharted territory without having announced a new iPhone by now. Typically Apple announces new iPhone models in September, but this year, things are different. We now expect Apple to announce the iPhone 12 on Oct. 13 or Oct. 14 (here’s why). The delay isn’t really a surprise, as Apple has said this year’s release date is going to be a few weeks later than usual.
Get ready for the iPhone 12 now, instead of waiting until the last minute.
Current rumors point to several new iPhone 12 models, maybe even an iPhone 12 Mini, with a new design (a dark blue color?), 5G connectivity and improved performance.
With this year’s launch inching closer, it’s not too early to prepare your phone now if you plan to upgrade. Below are some steps you can, and should, take today to get ready for iPhone 12, or any new iPhone.
Triage your apps and photos
This isn’t a fun task, I admit, but it’s a necessary one. Sit down and go through all of the apps installed on your phone, deleting the apps you no longer use. Then, go through the Photos app and delete all of the random screenshots, photos and videos you’ve held onto for no reason.
Your iPhone will feel less cluttered and you’ll free up storage space and, in turn, reduce the amount of space you’ll need to back up your phone. Another benefit is that it will take less time to restore your new iPhone when you’re setting it up.