After a brief respite, Miss Informed has now returned from her summer holiday. Luckily there has been no shortage of FUD in my absence. You see gentle readers, according to Alastair Stevenson from Business Insider it would appear that Apple have invented and perfected NFC payments for the smartphone! Luckily those of us who are capable of reading will quickly learn this is totally false. Bigglybobblyboo wrote a nice piece warning of the dangers of using Apple Pay with a low battery. So let’s get to the facts, shall we? In the opening paragraph Mr Stevenson wrote-
“Come the public release of any new smartphone, app, or service, hackers are given a new challenge and toy to play with, and will race to be the first group or lone wolf to crack its defences.“
In 2007 the Nokia 6131 was the first phone with NFC capabilities.
In 2010 the Sony Nexus S became the first android phone to offer NFC.
In 2011 BlackBerry launched NFC for its’ smartphones (Bold 9900)
In 2012 Windows released NFC for its’ smartphones (Windows Phone 8)
Finally, in 2014 Apple releases NFC for its’ phones – a full seven years after the introduction!
With the introduction of Host Card Emulation (HCE) simplifying some of the complexities, security is taken to a whole new level. In spite of this Mr Stevenson further writes-
“Yet, come the release of Apple Pay in the UK on July 14, the doomsaying didn’t ring true and we’re still yet to hear about a successful scam or proof of concept attack targeting the platform.“
One must assume that Mr Stevenson writes with a UK-centric view, as Apple Pay had previously been rolled out in other parts of the world. Mr Stevenson blathers on about how secure Apple Pay is and how hackers will need to come up with new tech to bypass the security. While a ‘proof of concept attack’ may not have occurred, Web99 wrote there have been many successful scams.
One expert, Cherian Abraham, writes that Apple Pay fraud may have reached six per cent of all transactions at certain banks, that’s sixty times the average rate of fraud for credit cards!
One point Mr Stevenson obviously avoids is how Apple purposely crippled NFC so its’ customers cannot share files, photos, or music the way other platforms do. This would not do as it would result in revenue loss for their cash-cow, iTunes.
So if you like the ease of mobile payments via NFC, want a fully functional version of NFC, and value security, isn’t it time you tried BlackBerry?
Isn’t it time you came #BackToBlack?