2G Mobile Standard Isn’t Safe: Cybersecurity Researchers

Published by
Tanay Singh

According to a report by cybersecurity researchers based out of Europe, the 2G mobile standard of connectivity isn’t safe. In fact, the report highlights that the standard hasn’t been safe for the past 20 years or 2 decades. Many attackers might have been interfering with the data traffic for years now.

As per an Associated Press report, cybersecurity researchers in Europe found a flaw in one of the encryption algorithm used by phones. The researchers said that this flaw affects all the phones

that use the 2G or GPRS mobile data standard for connectivity.

Using 2G Phones Isn’t Safe

While most of the countries have adopted the 4G and 5G standards of connectivity completely, there are still developing nations that use the 2G mobile standard for staying connected. As per the researchers, the vulnerability found in the GEA-1 algorithm can’t be an accident.

Instead, the flaw might have been planted carefully and deliberately so that the law enforcement agencies can have a ‘backdoor’ and also comply with the laws that restricted the export of strong encryption tools.

The co-author of the paper said

that it is very highly unlikely that this was an accident. The co-author said the possibility of the flaw in the algorithm planted by mistake is as likely as someone getting six digits of the German lottery system right, that too twice.

It is a very big claim made by the co-author, Christof Beierle of the Ruhr University Bochum in Germany. This shows that using a 2G phone today isn’t safe since not only the law-enforcement agencies, governments but also hackers can eavesdrop on your personal information.

What’s worth noting here is that the GEA-1 algorithm was supposed to be phased out of smartphones as early as 2013. But this is 2021, and the researchers said that they found the presence of the algorithm in current iOS and Android devices.

The researchers said that the smartphone manufacturers and standards organisations have been notified of the fact and asked to fix the issue as soon as possible. This is a strong revelation by the cybersecurity research group. This shows that governments around the world and hackers can get information out of your personal life very easily.

Tanay Singh

Tanay is someone with whom you can chill and talk about technology and life. A fitness enthusiast and cricketer, he loves to read and write.

Published by
Tanay Singh

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