Posted by: David Harley | February 19, 2010

Flushed with success behind the sofa

In an earlier blog  I quoted a statistic that Randy Abrams quoted, to the effect that I apparently belong to a nation that in inadvertently flushed 850,000 cell phones down the toilet in 2007.

That actually seems quite grotesque: I’m not sure I altogether believe that nearly 1 in 60 Brits not only dropped their phone into the loo, but actually flushed it away. Does anyone have an authoritative source for that figure? And is the same toilet that our economy used as an exit route?

On the other hand, Bill Ray claims in The Register to have heard from the UK Home Office that 1.3 million of the 2 million or so handsets reported stolen turn up subsequently down the back of the sofa. Or something. Well, it’s not quite that simple, and there are dark mutterings about insurance fraud and such. Well, I’m not sure how many insurance companies will honour a claim without a crime number from the police, but perhaps some do.

There was actually a tenuous connection in that article to Apple, in that he mentioned “mobile phone identity fraud” and made a crack about dressing up as an iPhone. There’s a little more Apple content in an article by Larry Seltzer, where he suggests that  “Market Pressures Lead Mobile Vendors to Relax Security”, though his main conclusion is that “no platform beats Android for rolling out the welcome mat for malware.”

Well, it’s hard to argue with that: self-signed certificates and unrestricted availability of Android apps make Apple’s whitelisting model look very safe indeed in comparison, as long as you don’t think about its disregard for the jailbreaking issue.

David Harley FBCS CITP CISSP
Mac Virus
Small Blue-Green World
AVIEN Chief Operations Officer
ESET Research Fellow & Director of Malware Intelligence

Also blogging at:
http://www.eset.com/threat-center/blog
http://avien.net/blog/
http://smallbluegreenblog.wordpress.com/
http://blogs.securiteam.com
http://blog.isc2.org/
http://dharley.wordpress.com

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Responses

  1. […] iron, false teeth, jewelry, and some of the hundreds of thousands of mobile phones that Brits are alleged to flush down the […]


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