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News Sep 16, 2020
| Original story from TU Darmstadt

This article is based on research findings that are yet to be peer-reviewed. Results are therefore regarded as preliminary and should be interpreted as such. Find out about the role of the peer review process in research here. For further information, please contact the cited source.Researchers from the Technical University of Darmstadt and the University of Würzburg show that popular mobile messengers expose personal data via discovery services that allow users to find contacts based on phone numbers from their address book.When installing a mobile messenger like WhatsApp, new users can instantly start texting existing contacts based on the phone numbers stored on their device. For this to happen, users must grant the app permission to access and regularly upload their address book to company servers in a process called mobile contact discovery. A recent study by a team of researchers from the Secure Software Systems Group at the University of Würzburg and the Cryptography and Privacy Engineering Group at TU Darmstadt shows that currently deployed contact discovery services severely threaten the privacy of billions of users. Utilizing very few resources, the researchers were able to perform practical crawling attacks on the popular messengers WhatsApp, Signal, and Telegram. The results of the experiments demonstrate that malicious users or hackers can collect sensitive data at a large scale and without noteworthy restrictions by querying contact discovery services for random phone numbers.

Genomics Union Tracks Strains of SARS-CoV-2

Initial findings reported by the Arizona COVID-19 Genomics Union (ACGU) suggest that following Arizona’s first reported case of COVID-19 in late January, the state experienced no cases that went undetected and was COVID-free until at least 11 distinct incursions occurred between mid-February and early April.

NIH Awards Seven Contracts Worth up to $22 Million to COVID-19 Digital Health Solutions

The National Institutes of Health has awarded seven contracts to companies and academic institutions to develop digital health solutions that help address the COVID-19 pandemic. The work could lead to user-friendly tools such as smartphone apps, wearable devices, and software that can identify and trace contacts of infected individuals.

Smartphone Data Used To Predict Brain Connectivity Linked to Anxiety

Information on social activity, screen time and location from smartphones can predict connectivity between regions of the brain that are responsible for emotion, according to a study from Dartmouth College.

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Source: https://www.technologynetworks.com/informatics/news/your-contacts-arent-safe-with-popular-messaging-apps-warn-researchers-340490

WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal, Messaging apps, Research

World news – GB – Your Contacts Aren’t Safe With Popular Messaging Apps, Warn Researchers

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