Methodology

Methodology

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Methodology

Introduction

The objective of this segment of the paper is to outline the methods that will be involved

with conducting an educational investigation into Bluetooth vulnerabilities and preventive

measures. Included are the operationalized variables, sampling plans, data collection techniques,

and summary of analysis procedures. Here the hypotheses will be presented that correlate with

previously stated research questions. Also, provided are the limitations that will be encountered

while performing the research study.

Research Design

A combination of both qualitative and quantitative methods guided the direction of this

study. The researcher expects to collect data by conducting a questionnaire survey and also by

reviewing previous literature that focuses on threats, preventive practices, and vulnerabilities of

the Bluetooth solution.

Hypotheses

In support of this study, the following hypotheses were developed: The means in which

cyber-criminals are intruding Bluetooth devices are evolving as the technology advances. If users

alter the default settings of their device, cyber-criminals will have a lower likelihood of

launching a successful attack. Inherent security vulnerabilities of the solution afford an easier

path for cyber-criminals to penetrate devices These hypotheses were derived from research

questions that are focused on the various Bluetooth attacks, weaknesses of the technology, and

methods to avert the unwanted invasions.

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Research Questions

The questions provided below were the genesis of this research:

1. What are the most effective methods used by cyber criminals to infiltrate Bluetooth

devices?

To prevent having information stolen or phones calls intercepted, establishing a better

understanding of what illegitimate methods are used is a necessity. Bluetooth is notorious for

falling victim to attacks such as Denial of Service or Man-in-the-Middle (Kaur, 2013). Certain

types of attacks resort in debilitating damage to the component.

2. What are the key flaws in the technology that allow unauthorized penetrations to occur?

With the many advances that have been developed, the solution remains vulnerable. Ibn

Minar and Tarique (2012) emphasize, “Bluetooth security specialists need to provide automatic

updates to its security protocols and user privacy protection methods for every new security

breach so that protection of the device user’s personal information becomes the primary

objective (p. 52).”

3. What can be done to effectively prevent Bluetooth attacks from happening?

Despite the technology vulnerabilities, some mechanisms can be put in place to prevent an

unwanted intrusion. Though no procedure will eliminate every attack, steps can be taken to

increase the overall integrity of a device.

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Operationalization of Variables

Derived from the identified research questions and previous literature reviews, variables

for this study will include effective methods, security flaws, and preventive measures.

Sampling Plan

For the first data collection effort, a non-probability method of quota sampling will be

applied. The reason for choosing this technique is that it is a time-efficient, inexpensive means to

reach the desired amount of participants. The second iteration of information gathering will be

performed by an additional literature review. Conducting a review of previous research will

provide supplemental perspectives and methods that this researcher did not consider when

organizing this research plan. This researcher intends to examine various sources including, past

journal and book publications that discuss in scholarly detail; categories of attacks, processes to

put in place that will inhibit hacking attempts, and known faults of the technology. This

technique will provide greater validity and reliability to the study.

Data Collection

A questionnaire survey will be disseminated through email to 85 DoD Information

Technology Acquisition Workforce (DITAW) members. These participants are government-

affiliated personnel that work with within DITAW, who are intimately familiar with the

capabilities of the Bluetooth solution as well as the security liabilities and threats. This group

includes active-duty military members, contractors, and government service workers. The ages

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range from 23 to 67 years old, men and women alike, with education levels contrasting between

High School Diploma and Ph.D. recipients.

Literature that discourses the identified variables in this study will be reviewed for

passages that either support or contradict the researcher’s hypotheses. Because a significant

amount of work will be found relating to these topics, the researcher will focus solely on those

that identify relationships between the main concepts of this study.

Summary of Analysis

Particular emphasis will be placed on the data analysis. These processes will formulate

the information that either substantiate or refute the hypotheses of this study. Because this

researcher will conduct quantitative and qualitative methods of research, two separate activities

of data analysis will take place. When performing the literature review, coding will be conducted

that underline key topics which capture the body of evidence this study is in search of. The

information depicted will be stored in a Microsoft Excel file. The data retrieved from the Likert-

scale survey will be transcribed to a diverging stacked bar chart. The chart will illustrate the

mean, median, and mode responses, therefore, providing a visual representation of the data

collected in the category of attacks and how many times a method of attack was carried out.

Limitations

There is the expectancy of encountering several situations that will hinder this research

process. One will be the case where some personnel who were requested to participate in the

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survey are on work-related travel without the ability to receive emails. Often this is the case

when staff are temporarily assigned to a submarine with no available communication assets. A

second limitation will be the difference of knowledge individuals have about Bluetooth.

Participants who have worked on Bluetooth enabled projects for a longer time will be more

knowledgeable. Thirdly, the time allotted to conduct the research left little room for conducting a

more in-depth study. Lastly, the researcher will be able to locate a large amount of literature

concerning Bluetooth; unfortunately, the majority of the material is dated and does not examine

the newest security features of the technology.


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