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Application SecurityMobile DataMobile SecuritySecurity

Growing Your Business: Millennials and M-Commerce

December 6, 2018 — by Mike O'Malley0

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Millennials are the largest generation in the U.S. labor force—a position they’ve held since 2016—and they’re involved in the majority (73%) of B2B purchasing decisions. Raised in the age of the Internet, they’re digital natives and easily adopt and adapt to new technologies. And mobile apps are their lifelines.

Why does this matter? Well, when you combine Millennials’ tech savviness with their business acumen, their clout in a digital economy comes into focus. As both decision-makers and connoisseurs of mobile technology, they can make or break you in a low-growth economy if your business model doesn’t square with their preferences.

In other words, if you’re not embracing mobile commerce, you may soon be ancient history. This generation has little-to-no use for brick-and-mortar storefronts, banks, etc., instead preferring to use apps for shopping, financial transactions and more.

Of course, making m-commerce a linchpin of your business model isn’t risk free; cybersecurity concerns are of critical importance. Increasingly, personal data protection is tied directly to consumer loyalty to a particular brand, and Millennials in particular care about how their data is used and safeguarded.

You Can’t Rush Greatness

While Millennials are renowned for an “I want it fast, and I want it now” attitude (which explains why 63% of them use their smartphone to shop every day, versus trekking to a store), the biggest mistake you can make is overlooking security in a rush to roll out a mobile strategy.

The fact is, vulnerabilities on m-commerce platforms can result in severe financial impacts; the average cost of a corporate data breach is $3.86 million. If a mobile app or mobile responsive e-commerce site is hit by an application attack, for example, short-term profit loss (which can escalate quickly) and longer-term reputation loss are serious risks. And as we move into 2019, there are several mobile security threats that we need to take seriously.

[You may also like: Are Your Applications Secure?]

Baking cybersecurity into your mobile strategy—as a core component, not an add-on—is, without question, necessary. The reason is manifold: For one thing, mobile devices (where your app primarily lives) are more susceptible to attacks. Secondly, mobile commerce websites are often implemented with a web application firewall to protect it.  Thirdly, Millennials’ reliance on m-commerce, both as B2B and B2C consumers, means you stand to lose significant business if your app or website go “down.” And finally, Millennials are security conscious.

Securing the Secure Customer Experience

So how can you help ensure your m-commerce platform, and thereby your Millennial customer base, is secure? A number of ways:

  • Guard your app’s code from the get-go. Test the code for vulnerabilities, ensure it’s easy to patch, and protect it with encryption.
  • Consider a Web Application Firewall (WAF) to secure your APIs and your website.
  • Run real-time threat analytics.
  • Be mindful of how customer data is stored and secured. (Don’t pull an Uber and store data unencrypted!)
  • Patch often. Because security threats evolve constantly, so must your security patches! Just ask Equifax about the importance of patching…

[You may also like: Growing Your Business: Security as an Expectation]

Of course, this isn’t an exhaustive list of proactive security measures you can take, but it’s a good start. As I’ve said time and time again, in an increasingly insecure world where security and availability are the cornerstones of the digital consumer, cybersecurity should never be placed on the back burner of company priorities. Don’t wait for an attack to up your security game. At that point, trust is broken with your Millennial customer base and your business is in trouble. Be proactive. Always.

Read “Radware’s 2018 Web Application Security Report” to learn more.

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IoT, 5G Networks and Cybersecurity: A New Atmosphere for Mobile Network Attacks

August 28, 2018 — by Louis Scialabba3

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The development and onset of 5G networks bring a broad array of not only mobile opportunities but also a litany of cybersecurity challenges for service providers and customers alike. While the employment of Internet of Things (IoT) devices for large scale cyberattacks has become commonplace, little has been accomplished for their network protection. For example, research by Ponemon Institute has found that 97% of companies believe IoT devices could wreak havoc on their organizations.

With hackers constantly developing technologically sophisticated ways to target mobile network services and their customers, the rapidly-approaching deployment of 5G networks, combined with IoT device vulnerability has created a rich environment for mobile network cyberattacks.

[You might also like: The Rise of 5G Networks]

Forecast Calls for More Changes

Even in today’s widespread use of 4G networks, network security managers face daily changes in security threats from hackers. Just as innovations for security protection improve, the sophistication of attacks will parallel. Cybersecurity agency ENISA forebodes an increase in the prevalence of security risks if security standards’ development doesn’t keep pace.

Add in research company Gartner’s estimate that there will be 20.4 billion connected devices by 2020, hackers will have a happy bundle of unprotected, potential bots to work with. In the new world of 5G, mobile network attacks can become much more potent, as a single hacker can easily multiply into an army through the use of botnet deployment.

Separating the Good from the Bad

Although “bot traffic” has an unappealing connotation to it, not all is bad. Research from Radware’s Emergency Response Team shows that 56% of internet traffic is represented by both good and bad bots, and of that percentage, they contribute almost equally to it. The critical part for service providers, however, is to be able to differentiate the two and stop the bad bots on their path to chaos.

New Technology, New Concerns

Although 4G is expected to continue dominating the market until 2025, 5G services will be in demand as soon as its rollout in 2020 driven by features such as:

  • 100x faster transmission speeds resulting in improved network performance
  • Lower latency for improved device connections and application delivery
  • 1,000x greater data capacity which better supports more simultaneous device connections
  • Value-added services enabled by network slicing for better user experience

The key differentiating variable in the composition of 5G networks is its unique architecture of the distributed nature capabilities, where all network elements and operations function via the cloud. Its flexibility allows for more data to pass through, making it optimal for the incoming explosion of IoT devices and attacks, if unsecured. Attacks can range from standard IoT attacks to burst attacks, even potentially escalating to smartphone infections and operating system malware.

[You might also like: Can You Protect Your Customers in a 5G Universe?]

5G networks will require an open, virtual ecosystem, one where service providers have less control over the physical elements of the network and more dependent on the cloud. More cloud applications will be dependent on a variety of APIs. This opens the door to a complex world of interconnected devices that hackers will be able to exploit via a single point of access in a cloud application to quickly expand the attack radius to other connected devices and applications.

Not only are mobile service providers at risk, but as are their customers; if not careful, this can lead to more serious repercussions regarding customer loyalty and trust between the two.

A Slice of the 5G Universe

Now that the new network technology is virtualized, 5G allows for service providers to “slice” portions of a spectrum as a customizable service for specific types of devices. Each device will now have its own respective security, data-flow processes, quality, and reliability. Although more ideal for their customers, it can simultaneously prove to be a challenge in satisfying the security needs of each slice. Consequently, security can no longer be considered as simply an option but as another integral variable that will need to be fused as part of the architecture from the beginning.

2018 Mobile Carrier Ebook

Read “Creating a Secure Climate for your Customers” today.

Download Now

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IoT, 5G Networks and Cybersecurity: The Rise of 5G Networks

August 16, 2018 — by Louis Scialabba2

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Smartphones today have more computing power than the computers that guided the Apollo 11 moon landing. From its original positioning of luxury, mobile devices have become a necessity in numerous societies across the globe.

With recent innovations in mobile payment such as Apple Pay, Android Pay, and investments in cryptocurrency, cyberattacks have become especially more frequent with the intent of financial gain. In the past year alone, hackers have been able to mobilize and weaponize unsuspected devices to launch severe network attacks. Working with a North American service provider, Radware investigations found that about 30% of wireless network traffic originated from mobile devices launching DDoS attacks.

Each generation of network technology comes with its own set of security challenges.

How Did We Get Here?

Starting in the 1990s, the evolution of 2G networks enabled service providers the opportunity to dip their toes in the water that is security issues, where their sole security challenge was the protection of voice calls. This was resolved through call encryption and the development of SIM cards.

Next came the generation of 3G technology where the universal objective (at the time) for a more concrete and secure network was accomplished. 3G networks became renowned for the ability to provide faster speeds and access to the internet. In addition, the new technology provided better security with encryption for voice calls and data traffic, minimizing the impact and damage levels of data payload theft and rogue networks.

Fast forward to today. The era of 4G technology has evolved the mobile ecosystem to what is now a mobile universe that fits into our pockets. Delivering significantly faster speeds, 4G networks also exposed the opportunities for attackers to exploit susceptible devices for similarly quick and massive DDoS attacks. More direct cyberattacks via the access of users’ sensitive data also emerged – and are still being tackled – such as identity theft, ransomware, and cryptocurrency-related criminal activity.

The New Age

2020 is the start of a massive rollout of 5G networks, making security concerns more challenging. The expansion of 5G technology comes with promises of outstanding speeds, paralleling with landline connection speeds. The foundation of the up-and-coming network is traffic distribution via cloud servers. While greatly benefitting 5G users, this will also allow attackers to equally reap the benefits. Without the proper security elements in place, attackers can wreak havoc with their now broadened horizons of potential chaos.

What’s Next?

In the 5G universe, hackers can simply attach themselves to a 5G connection remotely and collaborate with other servers to launch attacks of a whole new level. Service providers will have to be more preemptive with their defenses in this new age of technology. Because of the instantaneous speeds and low lag time, they’re in the optimal position to defend against cyberattacks before attackers can reach the depths of the cloud server.

2018 Mobile Carrier Ebook

Discover more about what the 5G generation will bring, both benefits and challenges, in Radware’s e-book “Creating a Secure Climate for your Customers” today.

Download Now

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Data on Demand: From Smartphones to Tablets, How Mobile Carriers Can Optimize Mobile Services

August 19, 2013 — by Nir Ilani0

Mobility is without a doubt, a big part of the IT landscape. As employees increasingly use enterprise applications (such as CRM, ERP and HR applications) while on the go, the enterprise workforce has become more mobile.  Adding to this, employees utilize their own mobiles devices for application access (BYOD – “bring your own device”), which means an increase in the variety of mobile devices from both compatibility and security viewpoints. Even outside of the enterprise, many of us increasingly use iPhones, iPads or Android-powered mobile devices for reading emails, chatting, streaming videos, browsing the Internet and more.

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The Mobile Momentum: How Can Carriers Manage Increasing Traffic in the Mobile Space?

February 25, 2013 — by Nir Ilani1

As their revenues decline and mobile carriers continue to struggle with the increasing traffic demand from their customers, Long Term Evolution (LTE) looks like a good candidate to reduce the cost per bit. I recently read a nice analysis from Deloitte that claims that 2013 will be a strong year for LTE adoption, predicting that more than 200 operators in 75 countries will launch LTE networks alongside their existing HSxPA networks. With a diverse range of LTE handsets and tablets available in the consumer market, overall LTE subscription is expected to exceed 200 million clients.

Application Acceleration & OptimizationApplication Deliveryapplication monitoringData CenterMobile DataService Provider

Road-show in APAC: It Was a Hell of a Ride!

December 20, 2012 — by Nir Ilani1

A couple of weeks ago I returned from a business trip to Korea and China where I met with a number of customers and partners from various vertical markets. The most interesting thing about this trip was that these two countries continue to encounter huge increases in their Internet traffic due to steady, on-going online business expansion. The customers I met with included an online payment services company, various leading mobile carriers, a large bank and a cable network operator among others. What I found common to these companies is that almost all of them are considering their next-generation strategy with regards to their data center technologies and operations. And while each customer obviously has a different environment with distinct applications and infrastructures it was clear that they are all keen on delivering one thing – an optimized Web experience.

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Mobile World Congress 2012: When Intermingling Smartphones, IP phones, POTS lines and more, how do you maintain consistent quality of service?

February 27, 2012 — by Meryl Robin0

It’s all in the delivery of the applications traversing the network. Visit Radware at the IMA partner booth (Hall 6 – C50)

Remember when you picked up the phone and could count on a dial tone and a clear connection? Voice communication was called a telephone; the service was POTS (plain old telephone service), and we dealt with only one provider — the telephone company that leased you the line and the equipment.

Application Acceleration & OptimizationApplication DeliveryBusiness ContinuityData CenterMobile DataServer VirtualizationService Provider

Impressions from a Business Seminar in Vienna: Freezing Outside, Hot Inside!

February 12, 2012 — by Nir Ilani1

A couple of weeks ago, during part of my European business travel to visit our customers, I had the privilege of being invited to speak at a seminar focused on next-generation data center needs & trends at Interxion in Vienna, Austria. While the outside temperature was almost zero, the seminar was one of the best (read: fun) I’ve ever attended.

But first, who’s Interxion? Interxion is a leading pan-European provider of hosting and colocation services – which means that their end-customers own and manage their servers/network equipment while Interxion takes care of the data center space, electricity, cooling and connectivity.  They have huge, impressive operation operating 28 data centers in 11 countries and serving 12,000 customers (carriers, enterprises, content providers, mobile service providers and more). 

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Our Next-Generation ADC Rocks! (or so our customers say…)

December 29, 2011 — by Nir Ilani1

Several weeks ago I returned from a business trip to Europe, in which I met with customers and new prospects from the UK and Czech Republic. Meeting with both carrier and enterprise customers, it was interesting to learn that many data centers are being re-architectured and some are even completely redesigned. Driving these changes are the introduction of new services and applications, standardization on new enterprise data center technologies (federation of network segments, new acceleration techniques, etc.) and core mobile data technologies (Diameter network adoption, as well as LTE and VoLTE in their plans) – together with the overall need to have more cost-effective data center operations and better cost structure.

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Mobile Data Growth Drives the Standardization on Diameter

December 12, 2011 — by Nir Ilani0

As mobile data and the demand for extensive bandwidth-hungry content and applications continues to grow, service providers are forced to evolve and migrate legacy high-touch services, and in particular, their authentication, authorization and accounting (AAA) infrastructure. In addition, as Evolved Packet Core (part of the 4G-Long Term Evolution) is able to address extensively higher traffic capacity, offer flexible charging models, deliver innovative services and seamless access connectivity, messages-based protocols, like Diameter, are more high touch than ever.