by Michael Ho

Filed Under:
hacking, phones, security


If Criminals Are Smart Enough To Hack Old Nokia's, Can't They Keep A Secret?

from the thankfully-criminals-are-dumb dept

If you have an old Nokia 1100 phone, maybe it's time to dust it off and try selling it in Germany where hackers claim to have figured out a way to use certain Nokia phones to steal authentication codes for bank transactions. There are a few reports that these old phones (if they were made in a very specific factory, not just any old model...) are selling for ridiculous amounts -- ranging from $700 to $30,000 -- presumably because the handsets are so hard to find and are valuable to hackers prone to crime. So far, Nokia says it can't imagine any way for these old phones to be hacked for banking fraud. But not surprisingly, security vendors are quick to point out the plausibility of this type of phone hacking -- since security firms can obviously benefit from unfounded fears that encourage consumers to buy security software regardless of the actual need for it. Is it really that hard to ask a security vendor what the likelihood would be for a criminal to actually succeed in such a scam? Hopefully, the odds of actually stealing any money with these ancient phones are approaching zero -- especially now that the tools to implement the fraud are known and apparently getting quite expensive. Perhaps the real suckers in this story are the gullible hackers who are buying old phones in shady forums for prices that are well more than the phones are worth?

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