Cybercriminals Can Now Monitor Your Geolocation

The research claims that this technique operates whether or not the messages are encrypted, raising concerns about user privacy.  Android operating systems have weaknesses, but there isn’t currently proof that it’s being actively exploited. 

Investigators have discovered a new smartphone flaw in text messaging that might let attackers track the whereabouts of users.  This vulnerability was discovered by the research team utilizing information from the SMS system and a machine-learning algorithm.  It allowed hackers to find individuals simply by obtaining their phone numbers. 

The paper claims that this technique functions whether or not the messages are encrypted.  Android operating systems have weaknesses, but there isn’t currently proof that it’s being actively exploited. 

Northeastern University Ph.D. student Evangelos Bitsikas and his research team used an advanced machine-learning program to analyze data from the relatively rudimentary SMS system, which has been the foundation for texting on cellular phones since the early 1990s, to reveal the flaw, according to Northeastern Global News. 

“You may find the perpetrator just by obtaining their phone number and possessing regular access to their network.  This ultimately ends in the user being tracked to various locations all over the world,” stated Bitsikas. 

Since its launch for 2G networks thirty years ago, SMS security has barely changed.  Users’ phones provide a delivery notification to the sender that serves as a receipt when they get a text conversation. 

Hackers could take advantage of this by flooding customers’ phones with text messages.  Even if the user’s interactions are encrypted, the hacker can determine the user’s location by examining the arrival time of automated delivery answers. 

“The attacker is interested in sending a few SMS messages after the machine-learning model has been developed.  The machine-learning program receives the results and responds with the projected location, according to Bitsikas. 

About The Author: 

Yogesh Naager is a content marketer that specializes in the cybersecurity and B2B space.  Besides writing for the News4Hackers blog, he’s also written for brands including CollegeDunia, Utsav Fashion, and NASSCOM.  Naager entered the field of content in an unusual way.  He began his career as an insurance sales executive, where he developed an interest in simplifying difficult concepts.  He also combines this interest with a love of narrative, which makes him a good writer in the cybersecurity field.  In the bottom line, he frequently writes for Craw Security. 

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