Tel Liu, president of Tencent Holdings Limited (SEHK: 700), one of the largest Internet holding companies in the world spoke yesterday at GMIC SV on the security of mobile devices. Tencent’s popular instant messaging client Tencent QQ, and their web portal QQ.com make up one of the largest online communities in the world; they also have at least twenty subsidiaries including a majority stake in Los Angeles based Riot Games, creator of League of Legends, which in October became the most played video game in the world.
His talk was somewhat similar to the panel on the future of mobile earlier yesterday morning. The panel brought up that one of the biggest hurdles to their projected future in the industry where phones will take up such a large portions of our lives as to be inextricably tied to our identities, was the issue of securitizing our data and our phones. Breaches and theft become much worse as we invest more into our phones.
Tel Liu pulled up a graph with the breakdown of complaints and or security issues customers had with their phones. Oddly enough, spam was the number one complaint with upwards of twenty five percent of customers reporting it (apparently it is a valid complaint). However, at least eight to twelve percent also complained about more serious matters such as data loss, theft, and privacy issues in regards to data being collected among others. There were also small numbers of complaints about bugs and strange glitches. Overall at least ninety six percent of customers complained of having at least one issue with their phones.
Tel said that some of these problems could be quite serious; he mentioned reports of key logging as well as Trojans, etc. Then he brought up a very comprehensive but not horribly comprehendible graphic to accompany his explanation of Tencent’s free security solution called Tencent One Security. His solution diagram somewhat resembled a grid with OSI layers on the y-axis and scale of operation (individual phone, local network, etc.) on the x-axis, except it was triangular. He ended by saying that they were doing fairly well since they started with 0 users in September of 2010 and have over 100 million as of October of 2012.
This writer thinks it might help that they have over 700 million registered users on their web community, which is probably just a little biased towards One Security. Still they’re doing pretty good, especially for something that’s free.