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Game Set And Match For Mobile Virus

June 26th, 2006

Despite many being in the throws of England´s World Cup Campaign another major sporting event starts today…Wimbledon. To ensure everyone can keep up to date on Henman´s last hopes to win the trophy, IBM has fitted the trees in the City of London with Bluetooth applications so mobile phone users in the area can access the latest scores on centre court.

This is a further step towards making the City of London one of the most technological advanced cities in the world capitalising on the latest technology available. Earlier this year The Cloud announced that it will be providing wi-fi access across the City of London so wherever an employee may be they can access email and the internet in bars, coffee shops and hotels.

This latest announcement that Bluetooth will be fitted into the trees could present a concern for business. A similar initiative was available for the Helsinki World Championship, which resulted in hundreds off peoples mobile phones being infected with the ´Comm Warrior´ virus after downloading Bluetooth information on the event. The virus sent messages to other mobile phone users listed in the infected handset´s directory resulting in recipients receiving an MMS from someone they thought they knew but actually was an infection.

With hundreds and thousands of people passing through the City every day the potential for a mobile cyber attack is huge. If they have the Bluetooth function turned on to receive Wimbeldon news they could instead be receiveing dangerous viruses that are being picked up on the mobile phone without the usert realising. It then only takes one user to accept this unofficial invitation and malicious content could then be downloaded onto their phone and sent out to the users contact directory.

The Danger to Businesses

From an employees perspective viewing Wimbledon results on their mobile will appear harmless but with many financial execs in the City using PDAs and mobile phones provided by their company it is important that employees are taking into consideration the potential loss of confidential information, contact details, and not to mention malicious attacks if they were to fall vulnerable to such an attack.

McAfee has issued the following advice for those wishing to receive latest Wimbledon news without being infected:

1. Turn off the Bluetooth facility of your phone unless you intend to use it or set your phone to hidden, so as not to broadcast your identity

2. Refrain from installing or accepting applications or services contained in Bluetooth or MMS messages that come unexpectedly, unless validated with the supposed sender.

3. Open files with caution – if you are unsure if it is legitimate it may be an infection

4. Regularly back up your phone directory

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