We talk to freedom activist and free software developer Richard Stallman, who believes the fight against the total surveillance on the part of the governments is far from over. The founder of GNU project and Free software foundation speaks to Sophie Shevardnadze on SophieCo about the recent leaks of the NSA and social media.
What kind of data is your cell phone company collecting? Malte Spitz wasn’t too worried when he asked his operator in Germany to share information stored about him. Multiple unanswered requests and a lawsuit later, Spitz received 35,830 lines of code — a detailed, nearly minute-by-minute account of half a year of his life.
Malte Spitz asked his cell phone carrier what it knew about him–and mapped what he found out.
If you think your iPhone is secure because you locked your phone with a passcode, don’t be so sure. Law enforcement is using a program called XRY, developed by Micro Systemation, to jailbreak pascoded iPhones and Android devices.
XRY works by first jailbreaking the handset. According to Micro Systemation, no ‘backdoors’ created by Apple used, but instead it makes use of security flaws in the operating system the same way that regular jailbreakers do.
Once the iPhone has been jailbroken, the tool then goes on to ‘brute-force’ the passcode, trying every possible four digit combination until the correct password has been found. Given the limited number of possible combinations for a four-digit passcode — 10,000, ranging from 0000 to 9999 — this doesn’t take long.
Once the handset has been jailbroken and the passcode guessed, all the data on the handset, including call logs, messages, contacts, GPS data and even keystrokes, can be accessed and examined.
”One of the morals is to use an eight-digit passcode.”
The eight digit code with letters only would take a few days to crack. This is significant if the person who has your device only has access for a few minutes. If they, somehow, have permanent possession, then it doesn’t matter how long it takes to crack. Your phone will be hacked.
The fact is, cell phones are no longer just devices used to make telephone calls. They are computers and one would be wise to take the necessary precautions to ensure the phone’s security by keeping it out of the hands of an attacker.