Symantec warns users over Bluetooth security

Lynn Tan, from CNET News.com, has written a great article that addressed Bluetooth Security. With the increased use of Bluetooth wireless, awareness of security issues or at least knowledge of potential issues should be a concern for all.

A study by research firm InsightExpress revealed that 73 percent of mobile device users are not acquainted with security issues that could put at risk mobile devices such as cell phones and Bluetooth-equipped notebooks. To these users, terms such as “bluejacking,” “bluesnarfing” or even “bluebugging” would probably be unfamiliar.

“There are many other methods that (launch) a variety of denial-of-service attacks, and even some that could allow an attack to eavesdrop on private conversations,” Ooi Szu-Khiam, senior security consultant at Symantec Singapore, said in an e-mail interview. Ooi noted that “numerous instances of mobile viruses, worms and Trojan horses” have emerged in the past year.

How can you make sure your safe? It’s pretty easy:

  • Stay offline
    Turn off features that you are not using. If you have a Bluetooth-equipped device and do not need the function, then don’t turn it on.
  • Stay invisible
    If you are using the Bluetooth function and don’t require your device ID to be visible to others, make sure the device’s visibility setting is set to “hidden,” so hackers will not be able to scan and search for it.
  • Verify incoming transmissions
    Do not accept and run attachments from unknown sources unless you are expecting them. For example, if you receive a message to install an application and you don’t know its origin, don’t run it.
  • Use passwords
    Ideally, use passwords with a large number of digits. A four-digit PIN or password can be broken in less than a second, and a six-digit PIN in about 10 seconds, while a 10-digit PIN is likely to take weeks to crack.

You can read Lynn’s entire article at CNET News.com


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