After 10 long years I’m finally in heat

I know some people simply don’t have the time for the likes of Heat magazine. In fact, they’ll make a great show of haughtily flapping their broadsheets right in your face and declaring that your IQ is bound to have dropped several points just by picking it off the shelf.

I’m not one of those people, I love Heat. Don’t know why, I just do.

Admittedly it may not have the editorial content of The Independent, or offer an in-depth analysis of world events – much beyond weight gain, wardrobe malfunctions and celebrities who can’t make up their mind who to date. But that’s the whole point of a magazine like this.

It isn’t meant to replace ‘The News at 10’ or ‘Question Time’ and it never claims to help improve your exam results or boost your earning power. Rather, it’s half an hour of total escapism every week – and, if we’re all honest, an opportunity to reassure ourselves that those celebrities who ‘have it all’ often don’t.

Because, whilst the average reader may not have the fame, fortune or enviable shoe collection of most of the people featured week after week, at least us unknown, relatively broke, Louboutin-less readers are safe in the knowledge that we won’t be photographed nipping out to Tesco in our ill-fitting tracksuits, with hair that looks like an unwashed birds nest and eye bags down to our cheekbones. And we won’t make the headlines when we meet, marry and divorce in the time it takes a normal person to draw breath. And we won’t cause a national panic because we lost a bit of weight, or god forbid, ate too much for lunch.

So I reckon that magazines such as these actually work as a rather handy and incredibly cheap form of therapy for Joe Public. They give you a glimpse into the sort of lifestyles most could never hope to afford – unless your mum was a Rolling Stone groupie and you’ve just found out you can move like Jagger – and then show you that the grass isn’t always greener in La La land.

And it’s for that reason – and the handy TV guide – that I have been buying Heat since Issue 1. Now, 12 or so years on, having produced 2 children, lived in 3 continents and survived one life crisis after another, I’ve carried on buying it every week. And yes, I still have a go at my husband if he dares flick through it before I’ve read it cover to cover.

Granted, I often feel like I’m on the wrong side of 30 for the fashion spread and technically I guess I’m also old enough to have given birth to some of the Torsos of the Week, but what the hell. All those years of trivia and escapism haven’t done me any noticeable harm and I’m pretty sure my IQ hasn’t diminished over the last decade – and if it has, I’ll put that down to having children.

So all of that said, it would be something of an understatement to say I was a tad excited to open Heat this week and see I’d finally won Letter of the Week – I think I might actually have let out a squeal. So overcome was I with shock that I immediately had to call my husband (who totally understood my joy) and my sister, who initially thought I’d won the lottery.

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It’s a funny thing that after all these years of writing, having published a book, kept countless clients happy with copy and received fairly respectable hits on my blog, it’s having a letter printed in Heat that really makes my day. And winning the prize of course…

Now not that my 25.5 seconds of fame have gone to my head, but just in case a member of the paparazzi has driven down the A11 by mistake and is currently ambling around rural Norfolk looking for a way back to civilisation, I think perhaps I’ll make the effort to brush my hair before doing the school run later today.

f

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Published Book

****** HOT NEW RELEASE! ******

THE PRACTITIONER’S DEFINITIVE GUIDE:
SEAFREIGHT FORWARDING

ABOUT THE BOOK
Shipping is the most popular method of transporting goods today, with around 90% of all freight transported acoss the oceans and through man-made waterways. Now you can find out everything about seafreight forwarding, in this comprehensive volume that explains the workings of the industry, including up-to-date information on liability, cargo handling, tariffs and hardware such as the different types of vessels and containers.

The Practitioner’s Definitive Guide: Seafreight Forwarding is written with seafreight industry personnel in mind, including those intending to join the industry and those who simply need a reference. This book provides a complete, practical overview of seafreight operations, which can be readily applied in actual field settings.

*** Note from the author ***

Well, what can I say? Apart from perhaps that this could possibly
be one of the most sleep inducing books ever written.

An absolute must have for any raging insomniacs…


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Article – Hobsons Guide

The Benefits of studying Science, Engineering and Technology in Australia

Australia has always been famous for its sunshine, sandy beaches and kangaroos and now it also being celebrated as a cutting edge and technologically advanced country, internationally recognised throughout the Science, Engineering and Technology communities for the contributions and outstanding achievements that have been made in recent years.

Being amongst the top 10 spenders for research and development has allowed Australian scientists and researchers to make many groundbreaking contributions to medical science. Following in the footsteps of past Australians inventions such as the photocopier, the ‘black box’ found in commercial planes and air conditioning in cars, further developments in the world of high tech equipment are also taking place.

2005 is also proving to be a great year for Engineering in Australia. The Australasian Association for Engineering Education (AaeE) and the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) are coming together to bring the 4th Global Colloquium on Engineering Education colloquium to Sydney in September. Engineers Australia also declared 2005 ‘The Year of the Young Engineer’.

Australia has already proved itself to be one of the best places in the world to study and is recognised as such. When Asiaweek, an influential international magazine recently ran a survey to rank universities in the Asia Pacific region, Australia beat all fifteen of the countries being surveyed, including Japan and Korea. Two of the Australian universities came in the top ten, with eight overall in the top fifty.

It is little wonder therefore that so many new students arrive every year. According to Australian Education International, 244,504 new international students enrolled in Australian institutions by the end of March 2005, an increase of 7% on the previous year. These figures mean that Australia now has the third highest intake of international students, after the UK and US.

China and India have experienced the highest enrollment growth this year, at 22% and 42% respectively, followed by South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Thailand, Singapore and the USA.

These new students will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of some of Australia’s most successful past graduates. These include CEOs of global companies like Coca Cola, McDonalds and Ford, the first Japanese Astronaut and the many film stars now making it big in the bright lights of Hollywood. To date, 7 Australians have already been awarded Noble Prizes for their work in the fields of science and medicine.

Two sporting legends and graduates of the prestigious Monach University, are Championship tennis player Paul McNamee, who received his Bachelor of Science, and John Bertrand, the world champion yachtsman and winner of the America’s Cup who wrote his thesis on the aerodynamics of America‘s Cup yacht sails whilst studying engineering.

Another Monash graduate,Teo Ming Kian, received First Class Honours in Mechanical Engineering. He has since gone on to become the Chairman of the Singapore Economic Development Board and the Singapore Technologies Private Limited, as well as the President of the INSEAD Singapore Council.

As these past graduates have proved, an international education is certainly seen as very benefical in today’s multicultural and globally-connected world. The experience gained can lead to an increase in self confidence, a greater ability to adapt and interact on a professional level across an international and cultural divide and a broader global perspective and knowledge base.

When questioned by Hobsons UK about the benefits of employing students who have studied overseas, many companies listed all of these positive traits as clear advantages for new graduates looking to join the workforce.

Besides this valuable experience that time spent in Australia can offer, there also many other reasons why the country is now such popular study destination, such as the wide range of excellent courses from which to choose, including new subjects like Ecotourism, starting in 2006 and the Bachelor of Science (Surf Science and Technology), one of only two programmes in the world. Other benefits include the lower cost of living and more affordable tuition fees and the added incentive of fantastic work and travel opportunities during and after studies. All in all Australia really does offer students the ultimate educational and lifestyle package.

But perhaps the most important factor for any student looking come to Australia to study Science, Engineering or Technology, is the assurance that their final qualifications will receive international recognition, both throughout the community of scholarship and from prospective employers around the world.

A high standard of education is required to meet international requirements and guarantee a job placement within many industries, especially those that follow strict regulations and guidelines like Engineering. Australia is currently party to a host of agreements with other countries, including Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, South Africa, Canada, the UK and the US, to ensure that all Engineering qualifications are recognised.

The Australian Government does place a great importance on achieving international recognition for all degrees, diplomas and other awards that are gained in the country. To maintain the reputation for excellence throughout the educational system, all universities are regulated every year to ensure they meet the highest international standards.

Working to promote overseas the high quality and standard of education, training and research opportunities in Australia, is the Australian International Education Foundation (AIEF), a joint collaboration between the Australian Government and Australian education and training providers.

Australia is also party to two treaty-level UNESCO Conventions – the Asia-Pacific Regional Recognition Convention and the Lisbon Recognition Convention, both of which work towards the international recognition of higher education qualifications.

Universities in Australia today are now focusing heavily on ‘internationalising’, with around 3,900 formal agreements currently existing between Australian universities and their overseas counterparts, focusing on student, research and academic links. International curricula and research collaborations are constantly being developed and institutions are always on the look out to recruit teaching staff who are renowned and respected leaders within their own field.

Student exchange programmes are also actively encouraged, helped in part by the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). The AQF structure is a national system of learning pathways linking universities, vocational education and training, and school education. It allows students to move easily from one level of study to the next and from one institution to another subject to visa requirements.

The international recognition of an Australian qualification is evident not only in the rising number of students choosing to come to Australia, but also in the willingness of leading international universities to accept graduates from Australian universities for admission to postgraduate studies. Perhaps the greatest confirmation can be found in the high number of graduates who are gaining immediate employment within their chosen field, and going on to achieve successful careers in Australia, throughout Asia and across the rest of the world.

Article – Hobsons Guide

The Benefits of studying Business, Management, Economics and Law in Australia

In today’s fast paced and globally-connected world, an international education is seen as extremely advantageous. When questioned by Hobsons UK about the benefits of employing students who have studied overseas, many companies agreed that this experience to be a clear advantage for new graduates looking to join the international workforce. It can give students additional skills, such as greater independence and self confidence and a greater ability to adapt and cope in times of crisis. It can also install in them a broader global perspective and knowledge base and the ability to interact on a professional level across all international and cultural divides.

Australia is already recognised as one of the best places to study, with some of the best universities in the world. When Asiaweek, an influential international magazine recently ran a survey to rank universities in the Asia Pacific region, Australia beat all fifteen of the countries being surveyed, including Japan and Korea. Two Australian universities came in the top ten, with eight overall in the top fifty. Asia Inc’s recently poll of the best business schools in the region also ranked three Australian universities in the top ten, taking both 1st and 2nd place. Overall nine of Australia’s MBA programs were ranked amongst the top twenty-five.

Australian MBA courses offer a truly international perspective on the world of Business and Management, specialising in areas such as Asia-Pacific business strategy, global trade and international business. This focus on the local and regional market place will instantly make new graduates more versatile and suitable to those companies looking to recruit within the region. These companies include leading international organizations like GE Healthcare, Business Council of Australia, Coles Myer, Origin Energy, Crown Limited and Macquarie Bank.

The high percentage of Australia’s MBA’s who have gone on to pursue successful international careers across a wide range of industries, ranging from Banking, Finance, Insurance and IT to Manufacturing, Construction and Resources, are evidence of the international recognition that Australian MBA courses and qualifications receive.

Students looking to perhaps pursue a career in banking, trading, consultancy, stock broking or international trade, can have their pick of the many excellent Economics courses on offer across the country, all taught by internationally recruited and highly qualified staff. With a 98% employment or further study rate, an Australian Economics degree rightly deserves its outstanding reputation and worldwide recognition.

Several leading banks who operate in both Singapore and Malaysia, recently visited Australia to recruit new staff. From the final-year students at Monash University who were interviewed, eighteen were immediately offered positions as Trainee Bank Officers. This is a reflection of both the first-rate standards of the courses available and the high regard with which Economics graduates in Australia are held.

Australia is also home to some of the worlds’ finest and most internationally acclaimed Law Schools, all of which offer excellent programs and research opportunities with other faculties. Special emphasis is placed on international law and the qualifications gained are highly respected throughout the legal community.

This is demonstrated by the exceptionally high number of graduates who are awarded postgraduate scholarships to prestigious overseas universities, such as Rhodes and Fulbright. In the last seven years, five Rhodes Scholars were awarded to the University of New South Wales alone. Internships at top international organisations including the World Bank in Washington and the United Nations in Geneva have also given students the benefit of exposure to the world of international law; an invaluable opportunity for any new graduate.

It is little wonder that Australia has become such a firm favourite as a study destination, with so many new students arriving every year. Already famous for its sandy beaches, cosmopolitan cities and kangaroos, Australia also offers the ultimate student package. The diverse and multicultural society made up of people from 170 countries around the world, means that international students will always be made to feel welcome, safe and right at home. Add to that the wide range of courses, low cost of living, affordable fees and high post graduate employment rate, and students are finding that the world class education and lifestyle on offer are second to none.

According to Australian Education International, the total number of new international students enrolling (as of the end of March 2005) rose to 244,504, an increase of 7% on the previous year. India and China are experienced the highest enrollment growth this year, at 22% and 42% respectively, followed by South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Thailand, Singapore and the USA.

For the 191,112 new students enrolling from across the Asia Pacific region this year, Australia seems to be the next stepping stone for higher education. With the large existing Asian community offering an instant support system and the connivance of cheap regional airlines, students coming from across Asia are finding the transition much easier to make.

There are further benefits for students who take a Business, Management, Economics or Law course that focuses on events, circumstances and developments across Asia. These graduates will find themselves in great demand by companies recruiting from across the Asian Pacific region as they will already be familiar with the relevant market place.

Anyone who doubts that an Australian education can serve as a passport to a successful future only has to look at the achievements of past graduates. Included are many of the today’s great thinkers, leaders and achievers; CEOs of global companies such as Coca Cola and McDonalds, the first Japanese Astronaut and many of the film stars now making it big in the bright lights of Hollywood.

There are countless men and women who have already excelled in the business, financial and legal world following their education in Australia. These include David Mackay, a business graduate from Charles Stuart University who became the President and Chief Operating Officer of Kelloggs and Jacques Nasser, a business graduate from RMIT University who went on to became the CEO of the Ford Motor Company.

An exceptional role model for all female students is Margaret Jackson, a Bachelor of Economics graduate from Monash University. Today she is the Chairman of Qantas Airways as well as a director of Billabong International, Qantas Airways and John Fairfax Holdings Ltd. She was also awarded Australia‘s highest honour in June 2003: a Qantas Airways, for service to business and the community.

Others strong role models include Pasuk Phongpaichit, the Thai economist with a reputation as one of Asia’s most courageous and outspoken scholars and Rameshwari Ramachandra, a Director with 3R Holdings in Singapore and now recognized as ‘one of the most influential women in Asia’ (Asiaweek, July 2001). Both of these women were also graduates of Monash Univeristy.

To maintain such a high level of success and a reputation for excellence in their educational system, is of paramount importance to the Australian Government.

The Australian International Education Foundation (AIEF), a joint collaboration between the Australian Government and Australian education and training providers works exclusively to internationally promote the high quality and standard of education, training and research opportunities available in Australia. Australia is also party to two treaty-level UNESCO Conventions – the Asia-Pacific Regional Recognition Convention and the Lisbon Recognition Convention, both of which work towards the international recognition of higher education qualifications around the world.

Most Australian universities today focus very heavily on ‘internationalising’. They are constantly looking to develop their international curricula and research collaboration and are always on the look out to recruit teaching staff who are renowned and respected leaders in their own field. There currently exists about 3,900 formal agreements between Australian universities and their overseas counterparts, focusing on student, research and academic links.

Student exchange programmes are also actively encouraged, helped in part by the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). The AQF structure is a national system of learning pathways linking universities, vocational education and training, and school education. It allows students to move easily from one level of study to the next and from one institution to another, subject to visa requirements.

All of these factors make the Australian education system what it is today. The international recognition of an Australian qualification is apparent not only in the rising number of students choosing to come to Australia, but also in the willingness of leading international universities to accept graduates from Australian universities for admission to postgraduate studies. Perhaps the greatest confirmation can be found in the high number of graduates who are gaining immediate employment within their chosen field, and going on to achieve successful careers in Australia, throughout Asia and across the rest of the world.

Article – Hobsons Guide

The Benefits of studying Arts, Humanities, Social Science and Languages in Australia

Located in the hub of the thriving Asia Pacific region, Australia is a country with its finger on the pulse of an ever changing world. It is home to some of the worlds most energetic and cosmopolitan cities, multi-national companies and creative minds and its population of 19 million, multicultural society.

Already offering the universal lifestyle appeal of sun, sand and surfing, Australia can also provide international students with the ultimate educational package. A wide range of courses, low cost of living, affordable fees and high post graduate employment rate are all on offer, in a welcoming and safe environment.

It is no surprise therefore that Australia, with its world class and internationally recognised education system has become a leading study destination and one of the best places in the world to study. Asiaweek’s recent survey of the top universities put Australian at the top of the list, with two universities in the top ten and eight overall in the top fifty. This meant that Australia beat all fifteen of the other countries being surveyed, including Japan and Korea.

The achievements of past graduates are further proof to Australia’s international standing. These include many of today’s great thinkers, leaders and achievers; CEOs of global companies such as Coca Cola and McDonalds, the first Japanese Astronaut and many of Hollywood’s stars.

Looking to follow in their footsteps are the new international students who continue to arrive every year. 244,504 in total enrolled in Australian universities by the end of March 2005, according to the Australian Education International statistics. This was a marked increase of 7% on the previous year. India and China are currently experiencing the highest enrollment growth, at 22% and 42% respectively, followed by South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Thailand, Singapore and the USA.

191,112 of these new students came from across the Asia Pacific region, making Australia appear to be the next educational stepping stone in this part of the world. No doubt the popularity of Australia as a destination is also contributed to by the large existing Asian community that offers international students an important support system, and the availability of cheap airfares home.

In a world of great technological, economic, political and social change, graduates in Arts, Humanities and Social Science can move into any number of careers. These range from journalism and the international media, teaching and education, international relations and politics, music, fine art and arts administration and community and social work.

With a Bachelor of Arts (Asian Studies) students will be able to gain an understanding of how Asian countries relate to each other, as well as to the rest of the world. Through covering topics such as mass media, popular culture, social change and human rights, students have the opportunity to focus on the structure and development of Asia‘s diverse societies and its economic and cultural links with its Asian neighbours. Graduates with an Asia-related academic background will find themselves in great demand by companies recruiting from across the Asian Pacific region.

Likewise a Bachelor of Arts (European Studies), covering contemporary European languages and cultures, will allow graduates to work around the world, within art galleries and museums, community arts and cultural organisations, teaching institutions, new technologies and the media.

In today’s global economy Language degree are seen as a real advantage, opening doors to a wide range of careers and opportunities, from business and media, to international relations. Being able to work in multiple market places will make graduates invaluable to employers around the world, especially in the booming Asian job market.

With China now having the second fastest growing economy and Chinese already the most widely used language in the world, there is great demand for graduates with a good knowledge of both the country and its language. Indonesian and Japanese language degrees are also in demand, for jobs both in the Indonesian and Japaneseand private sector.

European languages, including English, German, French and Italian, are seen as a passport to a wide range of international jobs, including teaching, management and journalism within the European Union. An Australian earned English degree is recognised and accepted throughout the world and can lead to further specialised training in law, psychology, librarianship, industrial relations or theatre and media work.

In the fast paced and globally-connected world we live in today having an international education is seen as extremely advantageous and Australia, in the heart of the Asia Pacific region, can offer a host of benefits and opportunities for students looking to studying Arts, Humanities, Social Science and Language degrees.

When questioned by Hobsons UK about the benefits of employing students who have studied overseas, many companies agreed that this experience proved to be a clear advantage for new graduates looking to join the international workforce. It gives students additional skills, including greater independence and self confidence, the capability to adapt and cope in times of crisis, a broader global perspective and knowledge base and the know how to interact on a professional level across an international and cultural divide.

Retaining the excellent reputation for their educational system is of up most importance to the Australian Government. The Australian International Education Foundation (AIEF), a joint collaboration between the Australian Government and Australian education and training providers works exclusively to internationally promote the high quality and standard of education, training and research opportunities available in Australia. Australia is also party to two treaty-level UNESCO Conventions – the Asia-Pacific Regional Recognition Convention and the Lisbon Recognition Convention, both of which work towards the international recognition of higher education qualifications around the world.

Ensuring strong international appeal and attracting the high number of fee paying international students is also important to all Australian universities. International curricula and research collaborations are constantly being updated and developed and the highest caliber of teaching staff are recruited from around the world. There currently exists around 3,900 formal agreements between Australian universities and their overseas counterparts, focusing on student, research and academic links.

Student exchange programmes are also actively encouraged, helped in part by the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). The AQF structure is a national system of learning pathways linking universities, vocational education and training, and school education. It allows students to move easily from one level of study to the next and from one institution to another, subject to visa requirements.

There are many factors that contribute to the international recognition given to an Australian qualification, including the rising number of students choosing to come to Australia and the willingness of leading international universities to accept graduates from Australian universities for admission to postgraduate studies. But perhaps the greatest affirmation is the high number of graduates who are gaining immediate employment within their chosen field, and going on to achieve successful careers in Australia, throughout Asia and across the rest of the world.


Work – Launch and Brochure Copy

Oriental Blend of Interiors UK
& OBI Lifestyle
Singapore
Oriental

Brief: Launch of Urban Resort range

Oriental Blend of Interiors UK and OBI Lifestyle Singapore offers a complete interior experience and a totally unique service for all of our customers. From our suppliers across Asia we source a select range of affordable home interior accessories and design led gifts, all hand crafted to the highest standards using a creative blend of materials, form, function and design, to reflect the perfect blend of distinctive Eastern influences with a contemporary western style.

With the fast pace of modern day lifestyles and increasingly hectic schedules the need to create the perfect home environment and a personal oasis of calm is now more important than ever.

To cater to this growing demand, OBI has expanded on our successful ‘Modern Living. Resort Lifestyle’ range and taken the concept one step further. We have drawn on and recreated the idea, image and emotion of high end resort living and from this, developed our new ‘Urban Resort’ range.

This stunning collection of stylish home interior accessories has been carefully chosen, combining the perfect materials, products and packaging to offer the style, sophistication and simplicity of contemporary SE Asian design. This range opens up the opportunityfor every customer to create their own personal and unique look, so that they are able to benefit from the calm, tranquility and beauty of Urban Resort living within the comfort of their very own home.

Brief: Brochure Copyrb

Urban fusion Summary

Whether you long to start your day soothed by the hypnotic sounds of a secluded Balinese beach, re-energise your body and soul for an afternoon in the minimalist surrounding of a luxurious sanctuary in Bangkok, escape for the evening to refresh and recharge your mind in the idyllic surroundings of Singaporean garden or perhaps to rediscover your energy and passion for life in the vibrant tropics of a Borneo night..

When you wish to fulfill every emotion and desire and live your life to the full, the urbanfusion range allows you stay in touch with all of your senses and escape to your own personal paradise at any time of any day.

urbanbeach

With swaying palm trees, untouched sandy white beaches and the hypnotic sounds of the ocean, few settings can match the pure romance and natural beauty of a secluded beach resort.

It is this very essence and the laid back ambience that the urbanbeach range perfectly captures, conjuring up images of a truly relaxing surrounding; a place where it is possible to unwind and escape from the stresses of everyday life, where all senses are awakened and the body, mind and soul are allowed to completely recharge.

urb

urbangarden

The very attraction of a resort garden is in its introduction of simplified structure into nature, the creation of a space that subtly blends the exotic with the practical. A place that offers tranquility and peacefulness, filled with the soothing noises of trickling water, the striking beauty of the lotus flower and the heady bouquet of lavender.

The urbangarden range depicts the very essence of such an organic refuge, one which offers the chance to refresh and revitalise tired minds and create a perfect escape from hectic modern day lives.

urb

urbantropical

Few places offer a greater source of energy than the pure abundance of untamed nature found throughout the tropics. These areas are so alive and steeped in natural raw beauty that they
bring with them a spirit and force that will rejuvenate the soul and renew a passion and vitality for life.

It is this perception of an undiscovered paradise that the urbantropical range effortlessly captures, drawing on emotions that encapsulate the spectacular power of a cascading waterfall,
the soaring canopies of leafy trees and the sheer abundance of tropical flora growing wild beneath.

urb

urbansanctuary

To spend time in the stripped back minimalist surroundings of an urban sanctuary is to immerse oneself in a place of complete calm and perfect serenity. With clean contemporary lines, deep pools of the clearest water and the most delicate scents filling the air, this haven from the outside world offers the ideal place to inwardly reflect and re-energise.

The urbansanctuary range reflects this feel of simplified luxury and the chance to indulge in total contemplation for the body and mind.


Bluesnarfing – Are you under attack?

First it was your computer and now it appears that even your mobile could be under attack.

It started with ‘Blue Jacking’ which allowed users to send a message to Bluetooth phones without authorisation. Now a new phenomenon has emerged called ‘Bluesnarfing’ (not to be confused with the harmless blue Smurf).

According to AL Digital, a networking and security firm, phones that were vulnerable to such a bluesnarfing attack include: Ericsson T68; Sony Ericsson R520m, T68i, T610 and Z1010; and Nokia 6310, 6310i, 7650, 8910 and 8910i. In such an attack all contact details, along with other information, are downloaded from a vulnerable phone whilst leaving no trace of the intrusion or theft.

Nokia are aware of these “security issues” and have admitted that a bluesnarf attack “may happen in public places, if a device is in the ‘visible’ mode, and the Bluetooth functionality is switched on.

The phones vulnerable to ‘snarf’ attack include the Nokia 6310, 6310i, 8910 and 8910i phones as well as those from another manufacturer”.

However some models invite attack even when in ‘invisible mode’, when the handset is not supposed to broadcast its identity and should refuse connections from other Bluetooth devices.

The 7650 phone has a different set of problems. If an attacker gains physical access to this model, then not only would the bluesnarf attack be possible, but it would also allow the attacker’s own Bluetooth device to “read the data on the attacked device and also send SMS messages and browse the web via it.”

Nokia cannot confirm if the other models are also vulnerable to this type of abuse, although so far they have been unable to recreate this “backdoor” attack on their 6310i handset.

They have, however, admitted that the 6310i is vulnerable to a Denial of Service attack, where the phone receives a “corrupted” Bluetooth message:

“A DoS attack would happen if a malicious party sends a malformatted Bluetooth… message to re-boot a victim’s Nokia 6310(i). We have repeated the attacks and found that there are some corrupted Bluetooth messages that could crash the Nokia 6310(i) phone,” said the company spokesperson. Nokia are obviously trying to play down these problems by reassuring customers that, following the crash, the phone will reset and function normally.

Nokia do not intend to release a fix for these devices for the time being. As they say, the attacks are limited to “only a few models” and are not expected to “happen at large”.

“In public places, where the above mentioned devices with Bluetooth technology might be targets of malicious attacks, at least in theory, the safest way to prevent hackers is to set the device in non-discoverable mode – ‘hidden’ – or switch off the Bluetooth functionality. This does not affect otherfunctionalities of the phone”.


Whether the problem of Bluesnarfing should be considered a great threat or not, is up to the individual phone owner. However, as with so many technology-based problems, there is always huge potential for future abuse and the possibility of becoming yet another security problem. It is unlikely to affect other Bluetooth devices such as laptops. Their systems are far more complex, making them harder to target, unlike mobiles which have far more limited resources for menus and configuration.

If nothing else, it makes you wonder if any mode of communication is safe anymore. Maybe the return to smoke signals and carrier pigeons is just around the next corner….

..

k

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