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  1. 1. White Paper Srusti Mobile Mobiles And Risks A case study on uses of mobile phones and various mobile scams September 2008
  2. 2. Mobiles and Risks Mobiles and Risks Contents – September 2008 Section 1: Background 3 1.1 Mobile Phone Penetration 4 1.2 Text Messaging 4 Section 2: Mobile Scams 5 2.1 Introduction 6 2.2 SMS SPAM 6 2.3 Not all SMS advertising is SPAM 6 2.4 How the SCAMS work 8 2.5 Mobile Phone viruses 10 2.6 Conclusion 10 September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  3. 3. White Paper SECTION 1: Background Srusti Mobile a mobile VAS Company
  4. 4. Mobile Phones and Risks 1.1. Mobile Penetration Worldwide mobile penetration rates are expected to reach as high as 95 per cent by 2013 from the current level of 46 per cent. Mobile penetration levels have already exceeded 100 per cent in developed countries such as the UK, but global levels are still relatively low. The advent of the mobile phone revolution has brought many benefits not least of all to parents who found added peace of mind from being able to arm their children with a means of keeping in regular touch. But it must be alarming to find that the devices they Today a head-teacher at hoped would make their children safer a major secondary can be used against them. The misuse of school in Edinburgh mobile phones and computers by children claims that 99 per cent of has long been a growing concern. But bullying at his school is while it is relatively simple to install now carried out through safeguards on home computers and mobile phones and laptops to prevent youngsters accessing internet chatrooms. unsuitable sites and chatrooms, regulating their use of mobile phones is far more difficult. And as the technology and access to new services improves it becomes impossible for many parents to keep track of how phones are being used or misused. Parents are often torn between their love of instant access to their children and their loathing of others' having the same. September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  5. 5. Mobile Phones and Risks Cyber-bullying is a growing problem in American schools. The term “cyberbully” refers to young people who use cell phones and other digital devices to harass other students. The bullies’ tools are text and photos that embarrass and unnerve kids. Such behavior is sadly an unwelcome by-product of advances in technology misused by inadequate youngsters who now have an easier way of taking out their frustrations on others. ‘RespectMe’, the Scottish Executive's new anti-bullying arm, fears in some cases that those tormented could develop problems such as eating disorders and consider self-harm as a result of being targeted. 1.2. Text Messaging Millions of mobile phone users worldwide quot;The act of texting have used text messaging to vote for their automatically removes favorite contestants. Many teenagers prefer 10 IQ points,quot; said Paul them to actually talking. Saffo, a technology trend forecaster in Almost overnight, text messages have Silicon Valley become the preferred form of communication for millions of people. But even as industry calculations show that Many Parents have people are now using mobile phones to moved to limit the send or receive more text messages than hours that their phone calls, those messages are coming children may get and under increasing fire because of the danger send text messages - they can pose by distracting those who New York Times send them. Though there are no official casualty statistics, there is much anecdotal evidence that the number of fatal accidents stemming from texting while driving, crossing the street or other activities is on the rise. September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  6. 6. White Paper SECTION 2: Mobile SCAMS Srusti Mobile a mobile VAS Company
  7. 7. Mobile Phones and Risks 2.1. Introduction Using a mobile phone to send and receive text messages and/or images, is very similar to using e-mail or instant messaging and some of the same safety rules apply. Your mobile phone can be a direct link between you and spammers, scammers, identity thieves, online predators and cyber- bullies. In the following pages we discuss how it is affecting daily lives of people. 2.2. SMS Spam SMS messaging is getting more and more popular, with the billions of text messages sent each year increasing steadily, the sector is soon to become the largest form of communication, far outstripping e-mail and snail mail. With such enormous popularity the marketers were bound to catch on eventually to instantly and cheaply reach huge numbers of people, and indeed they have. 2.3. Not all SMS advertising is spam The growth of commercial SMS messages is exponential, with legitimate companies using them for all kinds of purposes, including recruitment and publicity. The use of SMS messaging for marketing is obviously an attraction to businesses because it is cheaper than standard snail mail marketing, which often lands up in most people's waste paper bins, whereas SMS messages have to be read. In a similar way as e-mail advertising it requires very little infrastructure and organisation at the sending end, unlike postal based services. There are two kinds of commercial SMS messages, solicited and unsolicited, if they are solicited messages you selected to receive them and they can be a valuable tool for you, bringing information when and where you want it. If they are unsolicited they can be a nuisance, cost you money and lead to a host of problems. Until companies start to September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  8. 8. Mobile Phones and Risks realize their obligations and enforce the rules it seems unlikely that there will be an easy way to stop SMS SPAM with the exception blocking SMS messages to your phone completely, or complaining directly to companies about their unethical advertising. Both Sainsbury's Mobile and Virgin Wines in the UK were forced to offer public apologies after trusting a disreputable marketing company who then sent out unsolicited communications on their behalf - and if recipients had not complained then they would not even have known. The SMS marketplace does not just offer employment for spammers - con artists can find a home there too. They will text you with notifications of prizes and offers - all designed to defraud you in some way. Some scammers will even have the audacity to approach you in public, ask to use your cell phone for an quot;emergencyquot; and then dial a premium rate number that they are profiting from. 2.4. How the scams work More and more mobile networks are offering reverse charge SMS services that let a user be charged up to several pounds for incoming SMS messages. The idea is to let their users make very small payments, called micro payments, for services with their mobile quickly and easily. To authenticate the system, and before a charged message can be sent, a certain message must be sent to a network 'short code', a telephone number consisting of just 4 digits which can only be accessed on that particular network. The con artists will do anything to get you to send a message to this number, including sending sexy messages that pretend to be from a girlfriend, or urgent messages claiming that a loved one is sick. They play on the same human weaknesses that made the Melissa and Love Bug viruses so successful. As soon as you have sent the authentication to them they are free to send you as many messages as they like, costing over a pound each. September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  9. 9. Mobile Phones and Risks Of course as soon as a network has proof that such a scam is operating they close it down, but in the meantime many innocent users have been duped out of money, and whilst the problem is bad for pay as you go users, who may loose al the credit on their phone, for contract users with no spending limits in place the problem can be horrendous. Again there is no way to stop getting these scam messages without blocking all SMS messages coming to your phone, or moving to a network with no reverse charge system in place. If neither of these ideas seems attractive to you then be careful to check the number that the message came from before hitting reply on your handset. Never reply to text messages from people you don’t know because the message could be SMS SPAM, a phone virus or it could be from a predator or bully who has obtained your number from someone else or has quot;guessedquot; your number. Some SMS SPAM messages involve responding to a number that, when called, charges the users account extortionate amounts. Instead, block the caller, which prevents them from being able to call or send messages to your phone. If someone approaches you in the street and asks to use your phone (even if they say it is an emergency) direct them to the nearest public phone or, in the case of an obvious emergency, dial 911 (or whatever your regional emergency number is) for them. Do not allow the to use your phone because they may either be trying to steal your phone or, they may be a scammer who uses your phone to dial a premium rate number that charges your phone account. They profit from the call and you are left with a hefty bill. September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  10. 10. Mobile Phones and Risks 2.5. Mobile phone viruses Online virus warnings about e-mail worms and trojans are familiar enough and they are something that mobile phone users are also going to have to consider. We have looked at cell phone scams and SPAM and, just as we can see evidence of the same junk that appears in our Inbox, we can expect mobile viruses to be the next step. It is only a matter of time. There are already viruses for the pocket PC and palm operating system 'in the wild' and the problem is bad enough that a virus checker, pc-cillan, has been adapted to work on mobile devices. Without a doubt these viruses will be adapted to work on the next generation of phones, and with the rise of always on data solutions to next generation phones, like GPRS and UTMS, the exposure presented to crackers is getting larger. These problems however are being tackled at the network end, with firewall implementation from the networks, but it remains to see how big a problem it will be. Sensible use, the same as you would apply to e-mail and your computer will soon have to apply to mobile phones, and as always how exposed you are depends on the decisions you make. 2.6. Conclusion SafMobileTM can help to eliminate the unnecessary calls, SMSs, MMSs even filter which websites your child is allowed or denied to access from mobile phone. Simply active parental mode only approved calls (i.e. calls from numbers in you approve are valid and you trust them to call your child and your chilled is allowed to call them). Every other call, SMS and MMS will be blocked. You can even filter websites that your child is allowed to visit using advanced content filtering. Life can be little bit peaceful with Srusti Mobile’s SafMobileTM. September 2008 Contents – Mobile Phones and Risks
  11. 11. This White Paper Discusses: • The penetration of mobile phones in our lives. • How various Mobile SCAMS work. • How an ordinary man is venerable to the modern day Mobile Marketing. • How the children are adopting the Mobiles more rapidly then adults. • How to protect your child from misadventures. Srusti Mobile Reaching Beyond Limits a mobile VAS Company Headquarters: Development Office: Administration Office (Ireland): Srusti Mobile Pvt. Ltd.#774 First Floor, Srusti Mobile Pvt. Ltd., #230A, Srusti Mobile Pvt. Ltd., #114, nd nd 22nd A cross, 18th mail, 22 cross, 22 main Shelmartin Avenue, Fairview, nd 3rd sector ,HSR layout, 2 sector, HSR Layout, Dublin – 3 , Co. Dublin Bangalore-560034, India Banglaore-560034, India Ireland Tel: +44 (0)1482 586149 Tel: +61 (02) 8705 6960 Tel: +1 212 652 5302 Fax: +44 (0)1482 323577 Fax: +61 (02) 8705 6961 Fax: +1 212 202 4684