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About 92 percent of malware is directed at Android

Keep a closer eye on your smartphones: mobile malware skyrocketed 614 percent over the past year.

According to Juniper Networks' annual Mobile Threat Report, mobile malware grew by 614 percent from March 2012 to March 2013. This equates to 276,259 troublesome apps and vulnerabilities.

The study took a look at about 1.85 million total apps and vulnerabilities in that period of time. This 614 percent was a huge hike from the mobile malware increase of only 155 percent from March 2011 to March 2012. 

About 48 percent of the malware came from SMS trojans, which get users to send text messages to numbers ran by cyber thieves. Another 29 percent came from fake installs, the remaining 19 percent came from Trojan Spy malware. 

There were fake versions of apps that proved to be malicious, and the top imitators were of Angry Birds, Adobe Flash, Google Play and Skype. 

"There's no doubt mobility will continue to be a pervasive and disruptive force across every industry," said Troy Vennon, Juniper Networks Mobile Threat Center director. "We have found that it has created an easy business opportunity for malware developers who are becoming savvy in their approach to quickly turn profits in a rapidly growing market. We anticipate that similar to the evolution of PC-based threats, mobile attacks will continue to increase and become more sophisticated in the coming years."

Juniper Networks added that Android users are the main target of mobile malware, mainly because Android makes up about 60 percent of the smartphone market globally. In fact, the new report says that 92 percent of malware found was directed at Android devices. 

Another reason that Android is a prime target is because users rarely update to the latest software versions of the OS, meaning that they're not receiving the latest security updates from Google. 

Want to stay safe out there? Run software updates on your phones and avoid buying apps from unknown app stores. The same goes for users on any other platform; not just Android.

Source: CNET

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RE: OS updates?
By Tony Swash on 6/26/2013 12:19:07 PM , Rating: 1
The fragmentation of OS versions in the Android ecosystem is a direct result of the fundamental design and strategic decisions taken by Google when designing the core structures of Android. The way Android is designed, a design model which Google chose out of numerous alternatives, is one that hands control of OS updates (and much else) to the carriers and the device OEMs. This design decision by Google was deliberate, it was intended to, on the one hand, shelter Google from any ongoing liabilities or responsibilities in relation to the end use of Android (an avoidance of liability which is enshrined deeply in the Android licensing system) and on the other hand to make Android very attractive to carriers and OEMs who were being offered a strings free way to counter the rise of iOS. Google's Android system empowers the carriers and Apple's disempowered them. The way iOS is licensed, which hands all control, of OS updates and device OS content to Apple, is a bitter pill for carriers to swallow but one they are forced to accept because iOS generates so much more carrier revenues per user.

The result of Google's design and licensing decisions is that Android is the fragmented mess it is now and end users can only get OS updates at the whim of carriers who have a vested interest in not updating old devices but in generating new device sales. This will never change until Google bites the bullet and takes on the carriers, which it may do but it probably won't, because after all Android users are not Google's customers, they don't buy any advertising.

RE: OS updates?
By goatfajitas on 6/26/2013 4:59:46 PM , Rating: 2
"The result of Google's design and licensing decisions is that Android is the fragmented mess it is now"

Clearly you dont use Android and you know nothing about it. True, not all devices are on the absolute latest version, but anything from 4 higher is better than IOS by a good margin. Its funny. IOS users thing Android is fragmented. Android users just use it and love it.

RE: OS updates?
By Cheesew1z69 on 6/26/2013 6:26:24 PM , Rating: 2
Clearly you dont use Android and you know nothing about it.
No way! He is clearly an Android advocate! /rolls eyes

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