Spies in the boardroom
Cell phone, mobile device, smartphone… whatever you call the device, it’s one of the most prevalent tools for both personal and professional success, helping people stay connected, attend meetings, work on the go.
While many mobile device users may not think too long or hard about how the device makes the call unless it can’t find a signal you should be aware while using your phone in the next boardroom meeting.
In an article published a while ago by Popular Science, secure mobile phone vendor and manufacturer ESD America announced that its engineers and customers had detected 17 phony cell phone towers, also known as inceptors or IMSI catchers across the country using its CryptoPhone 500, an Android-based mobile phone that includes native voice and message encryption. While the inceptors may look legit, they are anything but: Cell towers could allow attackers to eavesdrop on calls and text messages or even possibly infect the devices connecting to it with malware.
According to Popular Science, though standard mobile devices may not detect a threat. Another sign is that standard carrier towers will be named whereas inceptors will not be. An interceptor or fake tower can force the decryption of devices connecting to it, allowing the tower to spy on and even hijack phone calls, text messages and other means of communications.
Imagine this happening while you are in your boardroom having the most important conference call with your entities around the globe to discuss your strategy.
I can almost read the headline in the news “Multi billion corporation CEO resigns after espionage”.
Mobile phones seek out radio signals and connect to the nearest cell tower, and each phone has to prove its authenticity to the tower it is connecting to. That’s where IMSI catchers, collect the IMSI identification numbers of the SIM cards used in cell phones. Cell phone towers nearby, regardless of whether the towers are fake or real, log the device’s IMSI.
This is where the tapping starts and you won’t even know about it.
Now, what to do to counter this irritating threat that you can’t even in the most secure room in your company make a phone call or send a message!
LIMA Intrusion Detector is Group 2000’s solution for detecting anomalies in the mobile network.
The LIMA Intrusion Detector solution consists of the Command & Control Center and one or more sensor devices. These sensor devices are setup in a geostationary setup; e.g. attached to buildings or structures and they are able to provide a (static) overview of all mobile cells in range. Using this static overview, the sensor devices in combination with the Command& Control Center application will be able to detect ‘anomalies’ within the area covered. In most cases these anomalies will be a kind of devices like IMSI Catchers. But also jammers and the use of so called (legal) femto cells for corporate use will be detected.
The LIMA Intrusion Detector will be delivered with a GUI that will easily be able to depict the cells in range and pinpoint / highlight the anomalies clearly.
Particularly for knowledge-intensive organizations like yours it is key to protect your company assets in order to prevent industrial espionage by other companies operating in the same domain or governmental bodies of foreign countries. The leakage of confidential information might e.g. result in the loss of your competitive advantage. As mentioned mobile communications by your employees can easily be eavesdropped without their knowledge through the use of IMSI catcher devices. LIMA Intrusion detector helps protecting your company assets by alerting your organization immediately when an IMSI catcher has been detected.
Want to know more, send me a message and let’s get in touch!
Senior Global Account Director