Failures of these basic principles could well enable attackers to break our new mobile-payment gizmos, and we'd all lose if that came to pass. The lure of payment systems that are secure to the consumer as well as the merchant is enormous. I'd love to get rid of that relic of the 19th century, the wallet. But if consumers feel that they are much more secure carrying money in their wallets, mobile payments will never get off the ground in a big way.
And I for one want them to. We were promised the Jetsons, and too often it feels like we're getting the Flintstones.
With more than 20 years in the information security field, Kenneth van Wyk has worked at Carnegie Mellon University's CERT/CC, the U.S. Deptartment of Defense, Para-Protect and others. He has published two books on information security and is working on a third. He is the president and principal consultant at KRvW Associates LLC in Alexandria, Va.
Read more about mobile payments in Computerworld's Mobile Payments Topic Center.