November 8, 2016 By Michael Ambrose 2 min read

The mobile security news roundup for this month covers startling statistics on public Wi-Fi use, mobile apps that leak location data, selfies as an authentication factor for payments, and a hackathon in which participants took down Android and iOS devices. Here are the top mobile security news stories you need to know.

Public Wi-Fi Use Grows Despite Obvious Security Risks

Our need to be constantly connected drives us to ignore possible risks and throw caution to the wind. A recent survey conducted by Xirrus and Morgan Wright found that 91 percent of Wi-Fi users believe public Wi-Fi is insecure, but 89 percent connect anyway. Public Wi-Fi use rose drastically in 2016 compared to 2015.

This trend is scary because organizations have not taken steps to train employees about the threats that may arise from public Wi-Fi usage. Many business users continue to connect to these networks without giving a thought to security.

Apps Leak Device Location Data

Applications that run on Android and iOS were found to leak device location data, according to Threatpost. This threat is not new but has been growing steadily as apps increasingly access location data. Data is usually shared with advertising companies and app developer servers, but leaked location data can be used to create targeted attacks that could result in corporate data loss.

Pay-By-Selfie Now a Reality

As mobile payments become more common, companies constantly strive to come up with innovative and secure ways to authenticate payments. Initially, banks and e-commerce providers used fingerprint and iris scanners to verify identities and process payments. Now, the latest fad in authentication, according to Infosecurity Magazine, is the selfie.

Hackers Take Down iPhone 6S and Nexus 6P

In a recently concluded hackathon in Tokyo, Japanese hackers from Keen Lab successfully took down Nexus 6P and iPhone 6S devices, Threatpost reported. Hackers used a two different bugs to exploit weaknesses in Android and install a rogue application. They then tried the same approach on an iOS device, but the bug was identified and removed after rebooting the device. Both exploits were carried out on the latest versions of Android N and iOS 10.1.

Join me again next month for more top mobile security news.

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