by Lina M. Maini
(This week’s Bulletin carries updates to our BB Vol. 7, May 12, 2008 edition regarding widespread telephone tapping and how to avoid having your firm fall victim to cell phone security breaches. The related video below cotains an actual conversation between a TV producer and her attorney. They are on the 36th floor of an office building; the intruder is FOUR MILES away.)
Small Phone, Big Ears: Cell Phone Tapping
Particularly disturbing law firms these days is the potential that client meetings, conferences… can be secretly monitored via the attorney’s own cell phone.
How it is done:
To remote access your cell phone’s “firmware” (hard drive), an interested party can:
1. scan for your phone’s frequency signature and bounce back an electronic tracer signal. In less than a nanosecond, your cell phone now serves as a broadcaster or
2. install spy software on your phone.
The obvious ethical issues of client/attorney privilege aside, firm operating procedures, sensitive case information, negotiation tactics… are delivered on a silver headset to outsiders with a desire to know.
How to tell if your phone is tapped:
The tech and investigation experts in the below video demonstrate cell tapping techniques , threat management and elimination. (Important note: the video concentration is on spy software installed on your cell, but your phone can be remotely tapped. There is no need for the thief to have physical possession of your phone.)
Spoiler: the three main clues that your cellphone is tapped are:
1. It feels unusually warm.
2. The battery drains more quickly.
3. You get static feedback from speakers on other electronic equipment within range of your cell.
How to prevent cell phone tapping:
1. Remove the battery before sensitive meetings.
2. Don’t take the cell phone into any high-stakes meetings.
3. Carry a signal jammer. Many are disguised as business card holders or similar small accessories and are extremely effective.
BNI Operatives; Street smart; Web savvy.
As always, stay safe.