HOME TECH TRENDS ONLINE SAFETY SOCIAL NETWORKING APP COLLECTIONS HOW-TO THE ONLINE MOM BLOG ARCHIVE EN ESPAÑOL
Technology A-Z
 
The Internet
 
Tech Hardware
 
Tech Software
 
Video Games
 
Protecting Your Children
 
FAQs
 
Getting Help
 
The Online Mom Network
 


Learn about The Online Mom Network
Join The Online Mom Network
How Do I Become An Online Mom?


The Online Mom provides internet technology advice and information to help parents protect their kids, encourage responsible behavior and safely harness the power of technology in the new digital world. Social networking, photo sharing, video games, IM & texting, internet security, cyberbullying, educational resources, the latest on tech hardware, gadgets and software for kids 3-8, tweens and teens, and more.

Could your cell phone be hacked?



Until recently, the UK phone hacking scandal, which has engulfed Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation empire and resulted in the closure of the 168-year-old News of the World tabloid newspaper, was regarded as a problem for celebrities, politicians, and members of the British royal family.

But recent revelations have shown that the phone hacking went far beyond the usual targets of the gossip columns, potentially affecting thousands of ordinary men and women.

The sheer scale of the problem has left a lot of people on both sides of the Atlantic scratching their heads, wondering how a device that they rely on for everyday private communications can be so vulnerable. If it can happen to thousands of Brits, it can happen to anyone, right?

Unfortunately, the answer to that question appears to be yes, according to numerous engineers and security experts who have studied the phone hacking issue.

First of all, the correct description for what has been happening in the UK isn’t really phone hacking but rather voice-mail hacking. Unscrupulous journalists and private investigators have been taking advantage of loopholes in the ID-checking procedures of the phone companies to gain unauthorized access to individual voice mail boxes.

Apparently, some of the UK hackers were just calling voice mail boxes remotely and inputting default PIN numbers, correctly assuming that the real phone owner hadn’t bothered to change the PIN when he or she first set up the voice-mail.

Others were using custom software programs to “trick” the carriers into thinking that calls to access voice mail were coming from the victim’s own cell phone. This technique, known as ID Spoofing, has been around for years and was allegedly used in a much-publicized US celebrity phone hacking episode as far back as 2006.

Although anti-spoofing laws have been passed and many of the phone companies have tightened their procedures, the hackers remain one step ahead of the game. Dave Rogers, a UK-based mobile phone specialist, wrote an exhaustive blog post on the whole UK scandal, and ends up asking whether any form of remote access to cell phone voice mail should allowed, given the obvious weaknesses in establishing authenticity.

In the meantime, US-based cell phone users who are worried about phone hacking can take a few obvious precautions:

  • Never leave sensitive information in a voice mail box. Delete messages as soon as you have listened to them.

  • Make sure you change your PIN # when you set up your voice-mail box and make a habit of changing the PIN every couple of months. Never rely on the default settings.

  • If you have a choice, select a voice mail system that requires you to confirm your PIN #, even if you are accessing your voice mail from your own phone.


Thank you for submitting your comment. Your comment will appear on the site after it has been reviewed by site moderators!
Post a Comment:
Name:
Email:
Comments (max 500 characters):

Permalink | Print | Email

Share this article!
Partner with Online Mom Media
Online Mom Media specializes in building powerful communities of influencers! [read on]
Join the BUZZ!
Join @theonlinemom and friends TODAY at 12 noon PT (3pm ET) as we Spring into Green! Great prizes! #VZWBuzz
[read on]
The Online Mom Blog
Connecting Your Mobile Lifestyle [read on]
Cómo encontrar en línea las mejores ofertas
Visite La Online Mom en Español!
[read on]
Stacey Ross on The Online Mom
Catch up on the digital lifestyle with Stacey Ross! [read on]
PlayStation 4 vs. Xbox One: Parental Controls
Which of the new gaming consoles offers better parental supervision?
[read on]
How To Make the Most of Those Daily Deals
Take a closer look at those daily deals to make sure you're getting a bargain! [read on]
Watch Out! Your Wristband Is Tracking You…
New ways to monitor two of the most important elements that factor into our overall health: exercise and sleep
[read on]
How To Beat Spam with Disposable E-Mail Addresses
There's an alternative to giving out your online information (or turning into a digital recluse): the disposable e-mail! [read on]
Managing Your Online Reputation
There are some simple steps we can take to safeguard our online reputations
[read on]
7 Apps for Finding Stuff Online
Loking to buy and sell online? Your smartphone can help! [read on]
How to Manage Your Cell Phone Bill
Don't be overwhelmed by that cell phone bill. We offer 7 tips that can help
[read on]
7 Social Networking Tips for Graduates
About to graduate? It's time to clean up those social networking accounts! [read on]
The Best Apps for Staying in Shape
10 great apps for turning your smartphone or tablet into your workout buddy!
[read on]
7 Steps to Smartphone Safety
Buying that first smartphone for your child? Make safety a top priority! [read on]
10 Essential Apps for the Busy Mom
Turn your smartphone into your very own personal assistant!
[read on]
Tweens and Facebook:
Do you think children under the age of 13 should be allowed on Facebook?

Yes
No
Not Sure




© 2011 the online mom, all rights reserved | site map ABOUT     MEET THE TEAM     CONTACT US     ADVERTISE     PRESS     PRIVACY     LEGAL