Hackers Shift Focus to a Fertile Ground for Fraud: Smartphones


Some hackers are shifting their focus from PCs to smartphones, reports the Associated Press. Security researchers have uncovered yet another strain of malicious software aimed at smartphones that runGoogle’s popular Android operating system. The application records and logs details about incoming and outgoing phone calls. Last month, researchers discovered a security hole inApple Inc.’s iPhones. Security experts say attacks on smartphones are growing fast, and attackers are becoming smarter about developing new techniques.

More than one-third of American adults now own an iPhone, BlackBerry or other mobile phone that runs the Android, Windows or WebOS operating systems. The devices are being used as wallets, email lockboxes, photo albums and Rolodexes. And because owners are directly billed for services bought with smartphones, they open up new angles for financial attacks. The worst programs cause a phone to rack up unwanted service charges, record calls, intercept text messages and even dump emails, photos and other private content directly onto criminals’ servers. Google has removed about 100 malicious applications from its Android Market app store.

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