Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Who's listening to your mobile calls

Hacker at work recording your calls
Mobile communications have changed the world and most people find it hard to get through their day without using their mobile phone. Phone calls have always been a personal thing and It’s not uncommon to leave a room of people when you’re phone rings. After all you don’t always want other people to hear your conversation as it might be private. But what if people didn’t need to be in the same room as you to listen to or even record your calls, look through your contacts, read your text messages or even change settings, for example, switch on the microphone. 

Unfortunately this is exactly what hackers are able to do, with just a small amount of equipment and a bit of time. They can set up a rogue cell and as your phone will automatically roam to the strongest signal, if they are close by your phone connects to them and you are at their mercy. In many cases the information they steal can be very valuable or sensitive and can have a major effect on businesses and individuals. So who does this? People who want a story to sell to the media, unethical competitors, anyone who can gain a financial advantage or advance their cause, someone with a grudge and last but not least, criminals.

What can be done to stop your mobile calls from being intercepted or hacked? There are many different options that are available to ensure that your calls are secure. Applications that can be downloaded and run on the handset are proving to be a popular solution. Most of these require the same application to be running on the both the caller and receiver’s handsets and security only works within a closed user group. Ideally, the best solution would be one where an application provides security whoever you call whether land line or mobile and also when you receive a call from anyone, anywhere.

Anyone who doubts the ease with which mobile phones can be attacked can search YouTube for a demonstration or Google for all the technical details. Key search words are “IMSI catcher” “Mobile phone spying” “Cell phone hacking”

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