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3G 4G LTE Boosts Online Sales But Also Increases Potential for Mobile Data Theft and DDoS

Cyber rings use DDoS to commit online crimes more easily because of huge 3G – 4G – LTE data capacity. They orchestrate DDoS attacks and simultaneously target data on mobile devices. Quarter 2 2013 ITU statistics note 2.1 billion active mobile broadband subscriptions, those with 3G, 4G or LTE connection. World population is toppling 7.2 billion. According to mobiThinking, Q2 2013 concluded that countries with the most 4G subscribers were USA, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Canada, Singapore, Sweden, Russia, Germany and UK. The more a nation connects users via LTE networks, the more susceptible to purposely or accidentally becoming a part of DDoS and data theft crime.

The number of entities affected, whether social, business, religious, or personal, rush to the cloud to sell goods and services, save big and small data, and collaborate on the same with others like “brick and mortar” stores never could. That cost saving, convenience and flexibility attracts good guys, i.e., honest customers and bad guys, i.e., DDoS hackers and their online crime investors. 4G LTE networks are big enough to route huge cyber security events like distributed denial of service attacks. Without being privy to their part in the schemes, DDoS can use corporate and residential networks to crush websites and web applications and become a mask for data theft on any online device.

How do LTE networks work? They use Internet protocol-based communication among a set of base stations and transport networks. Their core network point of entrance is through the smallest entity of femtocells for homes and small offices, microcells in urban areas, picocells in places like malls and airports, and macrocells in large rural areas. The stations act as wireless access points. The “cell” in the mobile phone networks provides radio coverage powered by the high powered cellular towers.

Femtocells make mobile security gateways IP addresses public for all to see online. Public IP addresses make it easier to execute DDoS attacks. What is at risk? New goals for hackers include wreaking havoc on such mobile features as call routing, cellular roaming, and subscriber data management

Malware can now mobile phones and their broadband mobile service to spread online. More people have mobile phones with 4G LTE than those with personal computers, making mobile phones a big temptation for cyber crime. Botnets used to be defined as a network of private computers infected with malicious software and controlled as a group without the owners’ knowledge. A better and more modern definition is a network of private online devices infected with malicious software and controlled as a group with or without the owners’ knowledge.

More public Internet protocol-based addresses encourages more hackers to commit online crimes. Places like train stations, hospitals, shopping centers, universities, urban neighborhoods, and other densely packed locations are a mecca for hackers. The writer of this article heard two young men quietly bragging on their on the spot hacking activities in a free wireless network at one of the world’s most popular coffee joints in a big mall.

Businesses rely on online service and sales and are caught in the middle of the DDoS aspect. Banking, social network. hosted data, voice over IP like Viber and Skype, game, email, video streaming, and other types of websites and web apps used most by mobile device users are terribly vulnerable now.

In conclusion, combine the fast and big bandwidth 4G networks with the necessary public IP addresses and practically 24/7 active mobile online users in densely packed subscriber areas, say, “Hello,” to a DDoS and online crime hacker haven. Internet service providers and online communications service providers need to setup monitoring, reporting, limiting, and mitigation and protection against DDoS.