In order to gain a better understanding of security in the mobile ecosystem, the FTC and the Federal Communications Commission ("FCC") have opened parallel inquiries into the way smartphone security updates are issued and handled by major mobile carriers and device makers.

The inquiry from the FTC officially seeks input from eight mobile device manufacturers - Apple, Blackberry, Google, HTC America, LG Electronics, Microsoft, Motorola Mobility, and Samsung. The FTC has issued orders to the eight mobile device manufactures, requiring each of these manufacturers to provide the agency with details regarding security updates that are released, in order to address vulnerabilities in mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.

The FCC has sent official letters to six mobile phone carriers - AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, U.S. Cellular and Tracfone asking for specified information about how they review and release security updates for mobile devices sold by them.

It remains to be seen how these regulatory inquiries will affect new regulatory standards and enforcement with respect to mobile security.