Adam Weinberg, FirstPoint: “the pandemic gave the threat actors an ever-increasing volume of opportunities to attack”
As employees of many companies went to work from home during the pandemic, the cyberattack surface drastically increased due to not enough attention and resources to secure all devices outside the office.
Whether employees are using computers or mobile devices, both are at risk of being attacked by cybercriminals when proper security measures aren’t in place. This includes malware, fraud, identity theft, data breach, and many more. When not taken care of, they can lead to major consequences, including financial or reputational damage.
That’s why various cybersecurity solutions, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) or Mobile and IoT Cellular cybersecurity software, exist.
To discuss cybersecurity challenges, cellular security, and the IoT landscape, we invited Adam Weinberg, the CTO and Co-Founder of Firstpoint Mobile Guard – a company that specializes in securing and managing cellular devices at the network level.
Would you like to share a little bit about your story? How did FirstPoint come about?
FirstPoint came to life after my years of working in mobile security as a whitehat hacker. Day after day, I saw the vulnerabilities inherent within the cellular network and I knew there had to be a way to reduce the attack surface. Dror Fixler, FirstPoint co-Founder and now CEO, and I discussed the challenges and market potential, and together, we started the company.
Can you introduce us to what you do? What are the main challenges you help navigate?
FirstPoint delivers a holistic cellular security and management system, providing comprehensive security and connectivity management for any cellular connected device at scale, as IoT, IIoT, or mobile device.
The comprehensive, ultra-secure, and multi-functional system enables enterprises to securely manage thousands of IoT cellular-connected devices. It reduces costs and boosts operational efficiency at scale, providing complete end-to-end protection with an easy-to-use, multi-tenant management interface, all while delivering the best protection against all types of cellular network attacks. Its easy set of API functions allows flexible, customizable configurations for any operational use case.
In your opinion, which types of organizations should be especially concerned with cellular security?
Security-sensitive organizations, including enterprises, critical infrastructure, fleets, smart cities, industrial, financial services, real estate and construction, legal, accounting, governments, and military – all need to worry about cellular security.
How do you think the pandemic influenced the ways in which threat actors operate?
Threat actors have always been comfortable working from home in their pajamas. With everyone else working from home, the pandemic gave the threat actors an ever-increasing volume of opportunities to attack, as home networks are never as secure as corporate networks – and IT departments just didn’t have the time or personnel to secure all the remote workers’ networks and equipment properly.
In your opinion, why do certain organizations are unaware of the cybersecurity risks lurking in their networks?
No matter how security conscious an organization is, they cannot defend against every threat – DDoS, device manipulation, network infiltration, data tampering or theft, and location tracking, for example.
What would you consider the most serious security issues surrounding mobile devices nowadays?
The most serious security issues with regard to mobile devices are simply control and management. Any time you connect a device to the Internet, regardless of the type of connection you employ, you put the organization at risk. These devices can be used by attackers to gain access to confidential business data and impact business services or even public infrastructure.
Because IoT is a relatively new and versatile domain, some challenges need to be addressed. Among them is the dual challenge of understanding the possible attack vectors for every specific type of device and deciding what security measures are needed to mitigate them.
What safety tools do you think everyone should have to keep their mobile devices safe?
Organizations need a network-based integrated platform that detects, alerts, and blocks different network vulnerabilities and threats, such as denial of service, SMS attacks, malware, mobile IP-data attacks, network fraud, and more.
How do you think the cellular IoT landscape is going to evolve in the near future?
GSMA Intelligence estimates a total of 25 billion IoT connections in 2025, with year-over-year growth of 15%. 57% of these are consumer IoT connections, and 43% are classified as enterprise IoT. 5G penetration will push critical IoT communication for new industries and verticals.
All these devices need to be protected, so comprehensive security and control are essential to ensure the IoT landscape remains safe, secure, and useful.
Share with us, what’s next for FirstPoint?
We recently launched our Protected Cellular Connectivity Suite, built for IoT enterprises. During this time of hyperconnectivity and record levels of cellular hacking, the platform allows companies to secure and manage the connectivity of their devices, allowing them to focus on their business.