Adam Adler: Ultra Secure Phones 2021
Adam Adler ( Miami, Florida): Which 2021 cellphones Cannot be hacked? Which phone is hardest to hack? Which phone is the most difficult to hack? Which phone is hack-proof? What is the safest smartphone? Secure Calls, Messages & Mails? 100% Privacy? Unhackable Device?
In recent months, high-profile individuals like Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and 'Shark Tank' co-host Barbara Corcoran both fell victim to cyber-attacks. Specialized smartphones that offer heightened security do exist, but they require major compromises when it comes to the overall experience. For example, they don't offer popular apps made by companies like Google and don't have advanced hardware features found on most modern smartphones. Public figures are more likely to take other precautions, like using a burner phone while traveling, rather than trading their iPhone for an ultra-secure phone.
Barbara Corcoran learned an important lesson last month when she almost lost nearly $400,000 because of an email phishing scheme. A scammer posed as her assistant and sent an email to her bookkeeper requesting $388,700 for a real estate renovation, as People and TMZ reported in late February.
The request seemed routine for Corcoran, the ABC "Shark Tank" judge, and millionaire real estate mogul since she often invests in projects like this. As such, she told People that she had "no reason to be suspicious" about the email.
But her company later realized that the request never came from her assistant; an imposter had altered the email address by one letter.
"Lesson learned," she tweeted on February 26, shortly before she was able to get the money back as CNN reported on March 3. "Be careful when you wire money!"
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Corcoran's experience isn't unique, in fact, 88% of organizations worldwide experienced targeted phishing attacks in 2019, according to cybersecurity firm Proofpoint. It's also just the latest example of a high-profile individual that's fallen victim to malicious actors.
Roughly one month earlier in January, it was discovered that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' phone had reportedly been hacked by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman in 2018. The Amazon chief's phone began leaking data after he received a video file via WhatsApp that was sent from bin Salman's account.
The two instances are inherently very different from one another. Corcoran's case involved a classic phishing scheme in which a scammer was able to trick her staff into handing over money rather than stealing it covertly. The Bezos hack, on the other hand, was executed by a malicious file that unknowingly gained access to information stored on his phone and secretly siphoned out data over time.
But there is a common thread between them: They both illustrate how vulnerable the devices we use for nearly every aspect of our daily lives are to attackers. And they both reiterate that high net worth individuals are particularly lucrative targets, and often communicate through the same devices and services used by millions. Bezos was hacked through WhatsApp on an iPhone X. Corcoran was phished through standard email. Specialized phones designed to enhance privacy and security do exist, but they often require trade-offs that would fundamentally alter the way most people use their phones on a daily basis.
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