Global Smartphone Boom Poses Huge Internet Fraud Threat, Expert Says
Rapidly increasing global ownership of smartphones and tablets will expose consumers and governments to much higher risks of Internet fraud and hacking, according to an expert.
Martin Sadler, director of the Cloud and Security Lab at HP in Bristol, England, said the expected rise in the number of electronic devices — connecting billions more people to the Internet — would make cyberattacks more likely.
Speaking at the launch of the new Cyber Security Centre at Oxford University, he explained that about 35 billion devices will be in use worldwide by the end of this decade, and approximately 24 million smartphone applications.
“The vast majority of software we will be using [by 2020] will be riddled with malware,” he warned.
“If you talk about four billion people going online by 2020, a large number of those people are in third world countries where they are looking for easy access to wealth or money - what better source of wealth than online?” Sadler said.
He said Internet crime would become “de-skilled” and added, “What today might be a very sophisticated attack on a nation state could by 2020 be an attack on you as an individual made by people who really earn very little a day - that kind of dollar-a-day threshold.”