Your smartphone is in constant thirst to get a stronger signal. This is the exact same reason why it is vulnerable to fraud and bogus messages according to new studies. Do you still recall the time when phones in Hawaii are receiving horrible yet inaccurate warning regarding an incoming missile attack? According to research, it showed that hackers can hijack the emergency system of a nation effortlessly to send any messages they desire.
In fact, they can even pretend to be the president of a country, most especially in the US. And mind you, this can even happen to the best printers in the industry, particularly the one connected to a Wi-Fi network. What hackers have to do is to tap into the network and once they did, they can send docs or anything they want from their location to the printer.
Studies for Backup
At University of Colorado Boulder, scholars perform an intensive study regarding Wireless Alert System. This is a federal operated arrangement that is designed to send three kinds of emergency warnings to all mobile devices and these messages are:
- Presidential Alerts
- Amber Alerts regarding Missing Children and;
- Imminent Threat Alerts like inbound missiles, dangerous weather etc.
The question here is, what’s the scale and intensity of such damages? As per their calculations, with only 4 fake towers, roughly 50,000 people seated together like in a stadium can be hit by the attack with 90% success rate.
That’s how the Process Go
Due to the reason that smartphones are in constant hunt for towers with strong signals, researchers had set up fake tower with .1-watt signal which is quite powerful already.
The phones have immediately dropped its connection after seeing this “legitimate” tower and seek connection with it.
In a normal cellular communication, a tower and phone opens their connection by means of exchanging messages and verify authenticity of each other. Idle phone will attempt 5x before it drops the connection. The entire process takes roughly 45 seconds. Throughout this duration, it’s feasible to send “Presidential Alert Message” in which the phone will verify and authenticate as a real message.