Tag: secure mobile devices

Mobile security solution adopted by Commerzbank for smartphone payments

Mobile Security Smartphone Mobile PaymentsVisual tool by Cronto to be used to help to protect consumers against Trojan malware infections.

Commerzbank has announced that it is using a new visual mobile security transaction signature tool from Cronto, a firm from the United Kingdom, in order to provide greater protection to its consumers banking online and through smartphones and tablets.

The protection is specifically geared toward preventing infections Trojan viruses.

The mobile security solution applies what is called CrontoSign technology, which is being implemented under the brand name photoTan. This will replace the current iTAN solution that is currently in place and which requires a unique number for the authorization of each transaction. By using photoTAN, instead, users are capable of performing verification of payments through the use of an app or a standalone gadget that uses a TAN authorization code to provide a digital signature for the transaction.

Commerzbank and Cronto have been working together for online and mobile security since 2008.

According to the Cronto chief executive, Igor Drokov, “We have worked closely with Commerzbank who helped to develop the CrontoSign visiual transaction signing technology from innovative ideas to the product ready to serve the needs of millions of banking customers.”

Last month, Juniper Research, the telecoms research firm, released a prediction that the adoption of smartphone banking services would break the one billion mark by 2017. That said, there were also a number of different hurdles to this uptake that were identified. Among them were concerns regarding mobile security following a number of reported events in terms of financial crimes that occurred involving consumers using smartphones and tablets.

This type of mobile security breach has created a lingering threat to the confidence consumers hold in the entire industry. For instance Check Point and Verisafe security venors reported the “Eurograbber” attack in November 2012 which utilized malware in order to break through PC and mobile security in order to target users and carry out transfers that were sent automatically and that ranged from €500 to €250,000.

That malware involved a Zeus Trojan bot attack called Zitmo, which infected smartphones and computers to compromise their mobile security, enabling hackers to receive and steal bank SMS messages to customers.

However, this new mobile security agreement between Commerzbank and Cronto is designed to overcome that type of attack so that it need not concern consumers who bank online.

Mobile security standards run afoul of trade groups

Mobile Security ProblemsTrade groups pan mobile security standards from federal agency

The National Institute of Standards and Technology, a U.S. federal agency that works to develop standards for various forms of technology, recently proposed new standards for mobile security. The proposal was issued in October of this year and calls for more robust mobile security measures to be implemented in order to keep consumers safe from exploitation. Since the proposal was released, however, it has been panned by trade groups that suggest that the standards being introduced are not practical.

Trade group suggests hardware standards could lead to trouble

The Telecommunications Industry Association, a trade group that develops consensus-based industry standards for information and communication technologies, is one of the more outspoken opponents of the proposed mobile security standards. According to the trade group, the proposed standards suggest that mobile security be bolstered through architectural means. This suggests that mobile devices must make use of different hardware than what currently industry standards call for, which could cause problems among trade groups and within the communications industry itself.

Drastic measures may be needed to ensure mobile security

Mobile security is becoming an increasingly serious problem. More consumers are using mobile devices today than they ever have in the past. As consumers become more reliant on these mobile devices in their daily lives, they are becoming ideal targets for hackers who wish to exploit the valuable information that is contained on such devices. The National Institute of Standards and Technology believes that drastic measures may be in order to ensure that mobile security is assured for consumers.

Agency claims better hardware standards are necessary

The National Institute of Standards and Technology suggests that current mobile technology is not adequate enough to ensure the security of consumer information. The agency believes that changes made to the hardware standards that mobile devices are held to are necessary for the sake of mobile security. Trade groups are opposed to this approach because hardware changes mean different standards that could destabilize much of the work that has already gone into standardizing modern mobile technology.