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The Rise of Digital Vaccine Passports Might Be a Major Security Threat

A lot of the things that used to exist solely in a physical capacity are starting to become digitized, and the coronavirus pandemic has created a situation wherein passports are among the latest objects that are now being used in a digital format instead of a physical one. Various kinds of digital passport apps are being used because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up allowing users to store their vaccination info in one place for easy traveling.

What’s more is that digital passports contain a lot of personal information as well such which makes them somewhat similar to identity cards. With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that the widespread usage of these kinds of apps creates a pretty easy target for hackers to obtain vast quantities of private information from a single source, something that most digital passport users don’t seem to be all that aware of.

A recent analysis conducted by Symantec has revealed that 27 of the 40 digital passport apps that they looked into had major security flaws. Over 40% of them kept the information on external storage databases which are considerably easier to hack because they are not as encrypted as they need to be with all things having been considered and taken into account.

Over 35% also didn’t use a secured HTTPS connection, something that could further create various vulnerabilities that hackers can start to target whenever they feel like it. Shockingly, 5% of these apps also didn’t use secured channels to transfer data, so it’s pretty clear to see that these passports are not as safe as people currently think they are.

The QR codes that these apps provide can help government officials get all of the information they need quickly and efficiently, but a lot more work needs to be done before an appropriate level of security is achieved. The prevalence of these digital passports means that time is quickly running out and it might soon be too late to fix anything.


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