Thursday, 20 December 2012

Secure your mobile phone conversations

This year phone hacking sparked the Leveson inquiry, which concluded that the press "wreaked havoc in the lives of innocent people." As a result of this more and more people and businesses are aware of ways that private or personal information can be obtained and how easy it is to do this today. Although heavier legislation will be put in place to stop future hacks within the media, people are now aware of how hacking can be utilised in other areas such as the theft of intellectual property, or getting premature disclosure of mergers and acquisitions. Listening into the private conversations of celebrities, politicians or business leaders can be very valuable to the hacker and damaging to the victim. Those who are potentially at risk shouldn't rely on regulation to stop future hackers. 

Instead, phone encrypting solutions are being used to ensure that you are not at risk. The first generation of solutions came from a commercial smartphone that used military grade encryption to ensure communication between two people with the same handset are secure. These early solutions would cost in the region of £2000 each and the choice of handset was severely restricted. 

Anvil Mobile have released a solution that is far cheaper and can run on any smartphone that uses Android 2.3 or later and on IOS4, 5 or 6. A Secure Mobile application is downloaded to your phone and activation details are provided once the contract is confirmed.  A new secure phone number which works concurrently with the existing mobile number is then used to secure in-coming calls from anywhere and is used to make calls to any number in the world with local protection against interception  . The application also provides easy-to-use, seamless integration with existing phone books/contact lists for convenient access. With this service it is also possible to hold and transfer to another number or use three-way conferencing. Both numbers work when called but any calls made to and from the secure number are protected. 

There are two versions of the application available, a standard and an advanced service. The Advanced version can safely make calls or receive incoming calls from land lines or mobiles anywhere in the world with full encrypted voice protection for both parties over the local leg of the call. Meaning that if your in a high risk situation and someone wants to hack your calls, both parties are protected on your leg of the conversation. The Standard version encrypts calls between two Secure Mobile enabled handsets, providing complete end-to-end protection.  

Secure Mobile uses advanced AES 256-bit encryption and the calls are made and received through a private secure network, which means that no calls are processed in a standard public operator network. Most alternative solutions use the public networks and rely on the same software being on the handsets that make and receive calls.

The Standard Service costs only £30 per month or £45 for the Advanced Service. Calls between Secure Mobile numbers on the same account are free and you can still use your existing mobile number and any contract minutes for non-secure calls. And because Secure Numbers on the Advanced Service are local geographic numbers, calling the secure number costs the caller only a land line call, even from overseas. Secure Mobile applications can be used anywhere in the world and local numbers are available in most countries making this a truly global solution.

“Whether it is to compromise intellectual property, overhear details of mergers and acquisitions or listen into the private conversations of celebrities, politicians or business leaders, it is simple and inexpensive to set up a rogue base station to intercept and record calls. And this is just one method that hackers use to intercept mobile phone calls,” said Ian Philip, CEO at Anvil Mobile.  “The only sure way to avoid the risk of being listened to is by encrypting the calls; but until now that has meant both parties needed to have special software on matching secure mobile phones. Secure Mobile overcomes this limitation with any call to and from any number being locally secure".

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