High-profile data loss incidents have forced many organisations to drastically alter security measures. Many encrypt every memory stick, disc and laptop in an effort to stop confidential information falling into the wrong hands.
A data loss wake-up call has been long overdue. For years, departments have been popping critical, unprotected information in the post and leaving laptops on trains, seemingly unaware of the serious repercussions that may ensue.
Yet physical data security measures mean fraudsters have turned to a new line of attack: phone communications. Unprotected voice conversations may yield confidential insider information, passwords and PINs.
Voice calls are almost always uncharted territory for business security, with some under the false impression that phone hacking is sophisticated and expensive.
In December, it was revealed that a technician had broken the 21-year-old computer algorithm used to encrypt calls across GSM networks, which carry most of the world’s mobile phone calls.
Look at the recent examples of celebrity phone tapping: politician Lembit Opik recently claimed he was concerned his phone calls were being intercepted; News of the World reporters have been jailed; and PR man Max Clifford recently settled a hacking dispute out of court for six figures.
Business leaders and public sector chiefs must readdress their approach to voice and message security. I believe that, increasingly, phone fraudsters are being hired or trained by rival businesses for corporate espionage purposes.
Yet customised and unbreakable encrypted phone offerings exist that provide end-to-end security, preventing criminals from listening into conference calls, board-level correspondence and financial reporting made over the phone.
Bjoern Rupp is chief executive officer at GSMK CryptoPhone
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