BlackBerry and Other Mobile Smartphones Pose a Security Challenge to Enterprise Network Managers, New Report Finds

Mobile Malware Viruses Can Infiltrate Enterprise Networks Through High-End

Handheld Devices, According to Unstrung Enterprise Insider

Apr 21, 2006, 01:00 ET from Light Reading

    NEW YORK, April 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Smartphones and other high-end
 wireless devices now enabling the enterprise mobility revolution may pose
 significant security risks for enterprise telecom and IT departments that
 don't take adequate measures to protect network resources, according to the
 latest report published by Unstrung Enterprise Insider
 (, a new subscription research service
 from Light Reading Inc. (
     Mobile Malware: The Enterprise at Risk evaluates the potential impact
 on enterprise telecom and IT resources of mobile malware -- viruses that
 target the operating systems driving today's leading mobile phones and
 computing devices, including Research in Motion's BlackBerry. The report
 identifies the potential entry points of malware programs and assesses the
 threat level that each potential trouble spot poses to the enterprise.
     The report surveys anti-malware products and solutions available from
 wireless service providers, handset makers, and third-party security
 software companies. It also includes a set of "Insider Tips" -- guidelines
 and procedures that enterprise telecom and IT departments should consider
 to minimize exposure to malware risk.
     The rapid uptake of advanced wireless devices by the enterprise
 workforce is making malware a more serious threat to telecom and IT
 resources, notes Tim Kridel, research analyst for Unstrung Enterprise
 Insider and author of the report. "Today's mobile OSs, such as Symbian and
 Microsoft Windows Mobile, are used by dozens of vendors across dozens of
 models, making it possible to write a single piece of malware that targets
 a pool of potential victims numbering in the hundreds of thousands, or even
 millions," he explains.
     "Malware writers are very good at identifying and exploiting all of the
 ways that data moves in and out of wireless devices," Kridel says. "Viruses
 are routinely hidden in games that users download over the wireless
 network. Others are transferred via Bluetooth or downloaded when the user
 clicks on a link in a message. A few can enter a phone one way and exit
 another. Therefore it is necessary to implement anti-malware tools and
 policies to address all possible scenarios and points of vulnerability."
     Among the report's key findings:
     * While most mobile viruses cause minimal damage to handsets and their
       stored data, the costs of lost user productivity and increased IT
       support can be significant.
     * Some malware can infect a handset and jump to a PC during syncing,
       extending the security risk to all enterprise IT resources.
     * Enterprises can't depend on carriers or vendors to analyze threats; they
       should assess products and cobble together their own solutions.
     * Some mobile OSs are far more vulnerable to malware attacks than others.
     Mobile Malware: The Enterprise at Risk, a 20-page report, is available
 as part of an annual subscription (six issues) to Unstrung Enterprise
 Insider, priced at $1,295. Individual reports are available for $900.
     To subscribe, or for more information, please visit:
     Launched in February 2006, Unstrung Enterprise Insider tracks,
 analyzes, and evaluates the key industry and technology developments that
 will have the biggest impact on the enterprise mobility market -- and by
 extension the entire communications supply chain -- in the months and years
 ahead. This new service offers keen insight into the hot-button issues that
 will affect enterprise deployment of enterprise mobility products and
 services, including:
     * Next-gen mobile telecom and computing devices and their impact on
       enterprise networks
     * Critical mobility applications, including VOIP
     * Security issues -- and solutions -- affecting corporate mobility
     * Convergence of fixed and mobile communications in enterprise networks
     * Detailed cost-of-ownership analyses that offer a much-needed reality
       check for enterprise decision-makers
     To request a free executive summary of the report, or for details of
 multi-user licensing options, please contact:
     Jeff Claudino
     Director of Sales, Insider Research Services
     Press/analyst contact:
     Dennis Mendyk
     Managing Director, Heavy Reading
     About Light Reading
     Reaching a core audience of more than 917,000 enterprise IT managers
 and executives, Light Reading Inc. publishes,
 the leading global content site for the telecom industry;, a storage networking site;, dedicated to wireless networking; and coming May
 2006, Dark Reading, a data security site. Light Reading is also affiliated
 with Light Reading was acquired by United
 Business Media in August 2005, and operates as a unit of CMP Media LLC.
     About CMP Media
     Through its market-leading portfolio of trusted information brands in
 the technology, healthcare, and lifestyles industries, CMP
 ( has earned the confidence of more professionals and
 enthusiasts in these fields than any other media company. As a result, CMP
 is the premier provider of access, insight, and actionable programs
 designed to connect sellers and buyers in each of these industries in ways
 that yield superior return on investment. CMP is a subsidiary of United
 Business Media (, a global provider of
 news distribution and specialist information services with a market
 capitalization of more than $3 billion.

SOURCE Light Reading