Chapter 14 - Mobile Security  pp. 735-752

Mobile Security

By Reza B'Far and Roy T. Fielding

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Everything that man does in his symbolic world is an attempt to deny and overcome his grotesque fate.

Ernst Becker


Security is always one of the biggest concerns when designing any application, but particularly distributed applications. Distributed applications operate over networks, involve multiple users, and have many other properties that make them more vulnerable to security breaches. Though there are stand-alone mobile applications, as we have discussed earlier in this text, most mobile applications, at their core, are distributed applications. Unfortunately, to date, there remain many unsolved problems with security concerns of mobile applications.

Our goal in this chapter will be to first introduce a taxonomy of mobile application security problems, look at few general approaches in solving these problems, and finally review those problems that remain unsolved. Security also tends to be a system-wide problem, not just an application problem, whether dealing with mobile or stationary applications. So, we are not out to show you sample code, standards, or specific techniques; such discussions are completely beyond the scope of our discussion. Our main purpose is to take a step back and look at the big picture of mobile application design and see where security concerns may be. Security is intimately bound to the design of the platform for which the mobile application is being built.

Chapter 14

Reference Title: References

Reference Type: reference-list

Reference Type: reference-list

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[Martin-Flatin 1999] Push vs. Pull in Web-Based Network Management. J.-P. Martin-Flatin, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne, 1999
[MASIF 1997] Mobile Agent System Interoperability Facilities Specification. GMD FOKUS, IBM Corporation, with cooperation from Crystliz, Inc., General Magic, Inc., and the Open group, 1997
[MAUI 2000] Mobile Agent to User Interaction (MAUI). P. Mihailescu, C. Gamage, and E. A. Kendall, Monash University, Australia, 2000
[McClure, Scambray, and Kurtz 1999] Hacking Exposed: Network Security Secrets and Solutions, McGraw-Hill Osborne Media, 1999
[McLaughlin 2000] Java and XML. B. Mclaughlin, O'Reily & Associates, 2000
[Melnik and Decker 2000] A Layered Approach to Information Modeling and Interoperability on the Web. S. Melnik and S. Decker, Stanford University, available at∼melnik/pub/sw00/sw00.pdf
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[Miga et al. 2002] Deriving Message Sequence Charts from Use Case Maps Scenario Specifications. A. Miga, D. Amyot, F. Bordeleau, D. Cameron, and M. Woodside, Carlton University at Ottawa, Canada, 2002
[Minh 1997] Multimodal User Interface Research (MUIR), Modal, Specification and Design. C. Min, Master's Thesis, Department of Computer Science and Technology, Peking University, June 20, 1997
[Moczar and Aston 2002] Cocoon Developer's Handbook. L. Moczar and J. Aston, Sams Publishing, 2002
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vol, pages [Munoz et al. 2003] “Context-Aware Mobile Communication in Hospitals.” M. A. Munoz, M. Rodriguez, J. Favela, A. I. Marinez-Garcia, and V. Gonzalez, in IEEE Computer Magazine, September 2003
[Murphy 2000] Enabling the Rapid Development of Dependable Applications in the Mobile Environment. A. L. Murphy, Washington University Server Institute of Technology, 2000
[NCC 2002] Wireless—A New Challenge in Software Testing. National Computing Centre, available at
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[Nunes 2001] Object Modeling for User-Centered Development and User Interface Design: The Wisdom Approach. D. N. J. Nunes, University of Maderia, Funchal, Portugal, April 2001
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[Openwave 2002] WAP Push Technology Overview. Openwave Systems Inc., May 2002, available at
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[Oviatt 2000] Designing Robust Multimodal Systems for Diverse Users and Environments. S. Oviatt, Computer Science Department, Oregon Graduate Institute of Science and Technology, 2000
[Oviatt 2002] Taming Recognition Errors with a Multimodal Interface. S. Oviatt, National Science Foundation, Special Extension for Creativity, 2002
[Oviatt and Cohen 2000] Multimodal Interfaces That Process What Comes Naturally. S. Oviatt and P. Cohen, Center for Human Communication, Department of Computer Science, Oregon Graduate Institute of Science and Technology, 2000
[Oviatt OHSU 2002] Multimodal Interfaces for Future Geographical Information Systems. NRC Committee on Beyond Mapping: The Challenge of New Technologies in the Geographic Information Sciences, August 2002
[Oviatt, Jacko, and Sears 2002] Handbook of Human-Computer Interaction—Multimodal Interfaces. S. Oviatt, Center for Human-Computer Communication, Computer Science Department of Oregon Graduate Institute of Science and Technology 2002
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[P809-GI 1999] Mobility in the Broadband Environment Based on IN Evolution. P809-GI project of EUROSCOM, Network Architectures for Broadband Mobility, Vol. 1, Architecture for the Benchmark Services, 1999
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Pages? vol? [Pinhanez et al. 2003] “Fostering a Symbiotic Handheld Environment.” C. Pinhanez, M. Raghunath, and C. Narayanasuwami, in IEEE Computer Magazine, September 2003
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[Raggat and Wugofski 2000] Towards Convergence of WML, XHTML and Other W3C Technologies. World Wide Web Consortium, available at
[Rausch et al. 2001] Extensions of the Unified Modeling Language for Mobile Agents. C. Klein, A. Rausch, M. Sihling, and Z. Wen, Siemens ICN, Munich, Germany, Institut fur Informatic, Technische Universitat Munchen, Munich, Germany, 2001
[Rausch, Sihling, and Wen 1998] Extensions of the UML around Language Concepts for Mobility. A. Rausch, M. Sihling, and Z. Wen, 1998, available at∼rausch/publications/2001/MobileUML.pdf
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Year? Title correct? [Spyrou, et al.] Wireless Computational Models: Mobile Agents to Rescue. Constantinos. G. Spyrou, P. Pitoura, and E. Evirpidou
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[Tseng et al. 2001] “Location Awareness in Ad Hoc Wireless Mobile Networks.” Y.-C. Tseng, S.-L. Wu, W.-H. Liao, and C.-M. Chao, IEEE Computer Magazine, June 2001
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vol, issue, pgrange [Varshney 2003] “The Status and Future of 802.11-Based WLAN's.” U. Varshney, IEEE Computer Magazine, June 2003
[Varshney and Jain 2001] Issues in Emerging 4G Wireless Networks. U. Varshney and R. Jain, Georgia State University, 2001
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[VXML 2002] Speech Synthesis Markup Language. D. C. Burnett, Nuance, M. R. Walker, Intel, and A. Hunt, SpeechWorks International, World Wide Web Consortium, 2002, available at
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[WAP Architecture 2001] Wireless Application Protocol Architecture Specification WAP-210-WAPArch-20010712, Wireless Application Protocol Forum, July 2001, available at
[WAP MMS Encapsulation 2002] Wireless Application Protocol MMS Encapsulation Protocol. Wireless Application Protocol Forum, Ltd. WAP-209-MMS Encapsulation-20020105-a, Version 05-Jan-2002
Title and year correct? [WAP Professional 2000] WAP Professional 2000. C. Arehart, N. Chidambaram, S. Guruprasad, A. Homer, R. Howelll, S. Kasippilai, R. Machin, T. Myers, A. Nakhimovsky, L. Passani, C. Pedley, R. Taylor, and M. Toschi. WROX Press Ltd., Acocks Green, UK, 2000
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[Zhang 2002] Provably-Secure Enhancements on 3GPP Authentication and Key Agreement Protocol. M. Zhang, Verizon Laboratories, Waltham, MA, 2002