Archive for February 29th, 2012

It’s human nature to want something for nothing. But when it comes to web services, that tendency seems to often blossom into a veritable psychosis. In the brick and mortar world, personally identifiable information has long been mashed into a commodity that is sliced, diced and sold. So is the situation better or worse for us in the digital realm? From the hue and cry over ‘Do Not Track,’ you might think the latter. You would be wrong.




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Most of the posts I write are optimistic and upbeat. Not this one. I have just come from an excellent breakfast hosted by Qualcomm where we had half a dozen talks about the future for mobile. We heard about the potential for NFC, augmented reality, mobile commerce, and mobile operating systems, but the presentation that really caught my eye was about the growth in mobile malware.

We heard that the number of new mobile malware threats identified in December 2011 was equal to the total number of threats ever identified through the end of 2010. A quick web search found many other people saying the same thing, including ZDNet who recently produced the chart below.

In short, mobile malware threats are growing almost unbelievably fast. They are not yet a fact of life for many, and I can’t recall anyone I know suffering from an infected phone, but at these growth rates it won’t be long before we have all experienced an attack.

Unless your phone is an iPhone that is. Kaspersky has only ever found two iOS threats and they were in 2011, and they targeted jailbroken phones.

Android users are far and away the most vulnerable, due to the open-ness of the system and the large numbers of devices that cyber criminals can target. If you are going to build a virus you might as well build it on the platform that offers the most potential victims.

The reason I’m posting this is that when something grows as fast as this I take notice. Rapid change creates opportunity. I’m not sure how this one will play out, but as a consumer I want to protect myself, and as an investor I want to understand who will profit from it.

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The Occupy Wall Street movement returns to the streets this week, targeting some of the biggest corporations in America. Dubbed the “Shut Down the Corporations” rally, protesters will chant, shout and march in unison in more than 70 cities to bring attention to corporate power and greed. The so-called “National Day of Action” zeroes in [...]

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Follow Yahoo!’s The Daily Ticker on Facebook here! Apple (AAPL) crossed an amazing milestone in after-market trading yesterday, when its market capitalization exceeded $500 billion for the first time. Apple is one of the only companies in history to break this mark, and unlike others that have briefly traded in this neighborhood–Microsoft (MSFT) and Cisco [...]

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Follow Yahoo!’s The Daily Ticker on Facebook here! Stocks were flat Wednesday morning, a day after the Dow closed above 13,000 for the first time since May 2008, the S&P had its highest close since June 2008 and the Nasdaq reached heights unseen since December 2000. In the spring of 2008, you may recall, the [...]

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Follow Yahoo!’s The Daily Ticker on Facebook here! Mitt Romney scores big in the latest round of primary voting Tuesday and slows any momentum Rick Santorum gained from his shocking three-way win in the last round of voting. (See: Ralph Nader’s Advice to Gingrich on a Third Party Run: “Go for It!”) The former Massachusetts [...]

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Follow Yahoo!’s The Daily Ticker on Facebook here! With the notable exception of housing, the U.S. economy has been on a fairly strong uptrend in recent months. But this is “as good as it’s going to get,” says Srinivas Thiruvadanthai, director of research at the Jerome Levy Forecasting Center, predicting the economy will cool considerably [...]

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