A new patent application (called “Mobile Emergency Attack and Failsafe Detection”) published on Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, as presented by AppleInsider reports, claims that a future iPhone feature may offer handset owners added security features for real life-threatening events including emergency situations and accidents. This option seems to become more and more important in the context of the modern turbulent world.
What is it?
The patent proposes an “attack detection mode” that is composed of various means through which the smartphone would be able to detect various emergency situations and automatically perform certain tasks, including sending a distress message or place a telephone call to emergency numbers or to preset contact numbers.
The system would also be able to “emit a loud audible alarm through the device’s speakers at maximum volume regardless of the device’s current silence or volume settings, in an effort to attract help from other people who may be nearby,” and could send GPS coordinates to preset contacts or emergency numbers.
How does it work and where can it be used?
The phone would use existing sensors including accelerometer or microphone to determine a threat. The software could also analyze the user’s interaction with the display or buttons of the device to determine whether assistance is required. In case of car accidents, the software would be able to tell the difference between driving mode and a sudden stop that could be caused by a collision. The system could also be used to monitor certain patients with specific medical conditions. Before initiating such actions, the software would offer the user time to provide feedback to the system, in order to avoid false positive trigger actions, by entering a code or pressing a button.
New forms of threats
Every day, new mobile applications appear that can be employed for beneficiary or malicious actions, intentionally or not. For instance, a new remote access toolkit (RAT) makes turning legitimate Android apps into malware easier than before. This program, called Dendroid, offers an easy-to-use commercial solution to inject malicious code for Trojan access into APK files for placement on Android marketplaces, bypassing security checks. It opens a back door, steals information, and may perform other malicious activities on the compromised device.
Unfortunately, Android is currently the platform of choice for malware, responsible for 99% of known threats, according to a recent report by Cisco. Thus, it is recommended that Android users employ anti-virus software on their devices, because even apps from the Google Play store are not trustworthy at the present time.
What else is there in stock?
Security and protection of people and data are of primary importance. Tracking lost or stolen devices, seeing friends and family members on a map, and interacting with an iPhone via voice without looking at the screen while driving are the current in-built security & safety features of iOS. The Apple Inc. takes up this tendency by developing the new ones.
Besides the Apple Inc., there are other companies, though of a smaller scale in terms of market share, that develop versatile apps for the provision of security and safety. One of them is mSpy; its mobile monitoring/tracking app is among the leaders in the mobile software industry. It provides worried parents and employers with the possibility of the incessant monitoring all the online/offline actions undertaken by the most vulnerable family members (children) and the security of business data stored on the target phones.
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