Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 3rd Jan 2011 23:19 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless You may not have noticed it, but in the past six months, we've been experiencing a true massacre. Not one written in blood, but one written in microchips and touchscreen displays. The scene of the crime? The United States. The perpetrator? Google's Android. The victims? Everybody else.
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Carriers
by jimmystewpot on Tue 4th Jan 2011 23:20 UTC
jimmystewpot
Member since:
2006-01-19

In the PC market there is an overall understanding that security is a major problem, unfortunately there is only really one player in the mobile space
that has an understanding of the PC era. In that updates need to be rolled out uniformly and quickly to avoid any potential problems. The player that has
gone into the 'mobile era' with that knowledge is apple and it shows in the way that they control and manage their platform. While I don't agree with many of
the apple business practises and refuse to spend any money on apple products they have some things right.

At this point we bring in the carriers who have so far not really had any 'security issues' to think about, as mobiles have been telephones they are basically all about phone calls, unfortunately while the mobile era devices are called smart phones they are more like tiny mobile PC's and all the problems that come with PC's come with Smart Phones. The 'Android Problem' as some apple bloggers/writers/analysts call it with carriers delaying updates, installing bloatware and other problems is a time bomb waiting to kick off. Why? It's simple if the carriers are not providing or stopping regular updates from the handset manufacturers then its going to only be a matter of time until a Worm is successful at manipulating and spreading like wild fire through the network. The network carriers will have a few PR problems but its not going to be a huge problem for them, rather its a billable problem in that carriers bill for data and phone calls etc so its just a window for increased revenue, there is no incentive for the carriers to provide bloatware free regular updates to the handsets.. its simply not in their interest to do so. To give an example, I spent many years working for a large international Telco, they had no interest in developing DDoS mitigation platform/strategies because they billed their customers for the traffic, so a DDoS was just increased revenue for them, often the service charge for any mitigation platform was lower than the potential revenue from the DoS traffic itself. These same attitudes are prevalent in most carriers that I have had exposure to or worked for. Nothing is going to change until users start to spend their money with alternative providers. Personally I buy my phones unlocked direct from third parties which do not have any bloatware installed and so far I get regular updates on all 3 android handsets made by HTC without carrier intervention.

The unfortunate situation is that when a worm does start taking down mobile networks, its going to affect all uses regardless of the handset they have chosen.

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