RSAC Fireside Chat: Deploying Hollywood-tested content protection to improve mobile app security

By Byron V. Acohido

Your go-to mobile apps aren’t nearly has hackproof as you might like to believe.

Related: Fallout of T-Mobile hack

Hackers of modest skill routinely bypass legacy security measures, even two-factor authentication, with techniques such as overlay attacks. And hard data shows instances of such breaches on the rise.

I had an evocative conversation about this at RSA Conference 2023 with Asaf Ashkenazi, CEO of Verimatrix, a cybersecurity company headquartered in southern France. We discussed how the Dark Web teems with hackers offering targeted mobile app attacks on major companies.

Many corporations outsource their mobile app development, and these apps often exhibit poor security practices, making them easy targets for cybercriminals, he says.

Verimatrix is coming at this problem with a fresh approach that has proven its efficacy in Hollywood where the company has long helped lock down content such as premium movies and live streamed sporting events.

Guest expert: Asaf Ashkenazi, CEO, Verimatrix

Its technology revolves around application-level protection and monitoring, which allows Verimatrix to collect data on app behavior without invading user privacy.

Coding embedded in the app provide a granular level of insight into what’s happening — when the app is actually running — and a degree of control that’s simply not doable with legacy mobile app security solutions, he told me.

For a full drill down, please give the accompanying podcast a close listen. Ashkenazi argues that we need better security solutions in general to mitigate the AI-generated threats running on our most cherished devices.

He observes that threat actors already use generative AI tools like  ChatGPT, Google Bard and Microsoft Edge to innovate malware; to keep pace, companies are going to have to get much better at not just identifying, but predicting attacks, especially on mobile apps. Agreed. I’ll keep watch and keep reporting.


Pulitzer Prize-winning business journalist Byron V. Acohido is dedicated to fostering public awareness about how to make the Internet as private and secure as it ought to be.

(LW provides consulting services to the vendors we cover.)

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