Tag: spyware

More BlackBerry Security Concerns in the United Arab Emirates


It’s interesting to see the sort of issues RIM comes across as its product finds itself in various countries around the world. Arab countries in particular have some pretty strict concerns about security and recently, government officials have commented saying that BlackBerrys operate “beyond the jurisdiction” of national laws because they immediately send data abroad to be “managed by a foreign, commercial organization.”

The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority voiced fears that the BlackBerry manages data in a way that could allow it to be misused. “As a result of how Blackberry data is managed and stored, in their current form, certain Blackberry applications allow people to misuse the service, causing serious social, judicial and national security repercussions,” the regulator said in a statement carried on the state news agency late Sunday.
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Mobile Spy for BlackBerry Now Captures Photos and Emails


Mobile Spy is software for BlackBerry that is used to silently record user activity of children or employees. The app logs usage information which is then viewable online in real time. Several log types are included such as entire SMS text messages, actual GPS locations and call information. All logs can be reviewed from anywhere inside a secure online control panel.

With Mobile Spy version 4.0, employers and parents now have the ability to view every photo captured and every email sent or received. Other features added in version 4.0 include the ability to view all contacts, calendar events, memos and identification information of any cell tower the device enters into range of.

Mobile Spy runs on all modern BlackBerry devices, and costs about $100 per year.

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Veracode’s TXSBBspy Spyware Proof-of-Concept for BlackBerry


TXSBBSpy Demo from Veracode on Vimeo.

Tyler Shields, senior researcher at Veracode Research Lab developed a proof-of-concept spyware package that demonstrates how simple it is to retrieve private data from a BlackBerry.

The above video demonstrates the spyware package, which he calls TXSBBspy, and uses it to take some very confidential information. In the demonstration, he uses some basic, publicly available functions to remotely dump all email and SMS messages, send the contents via e-mail, and conduct real-time monitoring of phone messages. He also remotely listens to a room using the BlackBerry’s mic, and follows the a user unknowingly by listening to their GPS updates.

This is a hot topic right now for BlackBerry as more users are downloading applications and accepting permissions without fully understanding what they’re allowing the app access to. Personally, I think RIM needs to give very specific instructions to the user about what they’re allowing an app to access. The permissions screen is far too vague.

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Security and Compliance Issues Facing Today’s Corporations



by Ahmed Datoo, VP of Marketing for Zenprise

The widespread consumerization and general adoption of smartphones in the workplace is adding another layer of IT complexity. It’s important to remember that carrying a smartphone is similar to having a computer in your pocket. Therefore, these devices face the same security threats as a PC. Along with network vulnerabilities that stem from malware embedded Websites and email attachments, applications are also at risk.

The increased popularity and availability of smartphone applications creates security implications for employees who increasingly download these apps onto their corporate phones. Today’s enterprise is ill equipped to handle the expected wave of device issues resulting from rogue applications. A rogue application could cause a security threat by pulling sensitive data from the network.
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SMobile Systems release complete technical analysis of Etisalat update


blackberry security shield

During the Etisalat controversy, one company that has been really helpful in determining exactly what is going on is SMobile Systems. They have sent me a technical analysis of the “upgrade” which I think the BlackBerry community would be interested in reading.
Click through for a technical analysis of the Etisalat software update

SMobile Systems release solution for Etisalat BlackBerry spyware


blackberry security shield

I was recently contacted by the good people at SMobile Systems, the providers of the only Antivirus/AntiSpyware solution for BlackBerry, about my article regarding malicious code found in a recent Etisalat update.

SMobile Systems have released a solution for the recent spyware-laden update sent to BlackBerry users on the Etisalat network in the United Arab Emirates.

The spyware intercepts emails and drains battery life remarkably fast. According to Chris Eng at Veracode, “the server receiving the initial registration packets (i.e. “Here I am, software is installed!”) got overloaded. Devices kept trying to connect every five seconds to empty the outbound message queue, thereby causing a battery drain. Some people were reporting on official BlackBerry forums that their batteries were being depleted from full charge in as little as half an hour.”

If you are in the UAE and on the Etisalat network, I recommend going to the SMobile Systems site and purchasing their SMobile Security Shield or Anti-Theft and Identity Protection software, which will remove the spyware, as well as any other malicious code on your device. If you have already purchased the product, all you need to do is update your software to be protected.

We are living in an age where our smartphones are becoming our personal computers, and therefore the focus of those who want to exploit our personal data in any way they can. Dan Hoffman, CTO of SMobile Systems said it best, “The truth about smartphones is that they are used in the same manner as personal computers and are susceptible to the same threats. It has become clear that smartphone users need to proactively ensure their devices contain the necessary security software to protect not only their e-mail and messaging data, but also to protect their identity and the integrity of their mobile financial transactions.”

Security Shield for BlackBerry is available for $35.41 CAD.

Anti-Theft and Identity Protection is available for $29.99 per year.