The Android malware trend no one’s talking about

Another day, another study showing Android dominates Apple in mobile malware. But the latest study also has another figure that will be of interest to IT – one that doesn’t get nearly enough coverage. 

F-Secure, a Finnish security company, released the results from its latest Threat Report.

First, the bad news: According to the report, Android accounts for 97% of mobile malware. That’s up from 79% in 2012.

Studies find varying degrees of how bad malware is, but it’s generally agreed that Android accounts for most of it. However, this study also had another key finding.

Play is safe

According to the results, only .1% of that malware was found on the Google Play app store. Most of the malware actually came from third-party stores and was focused on countries outside of the U.S.

What’s more, any malware found on Google Play was quickly eradicated from the store. It didn’t stay long enough to do much real damage.

No matter where malware comes from, it’s still not something you should be relieved about. But these results indicate that as long as users stick to the trusted app stores, they should be in pretty good shape.

Mobile security tips

Of course, no mobile device is completely immune and users aren’t completely safe. But here are some tips to pass along that could greatly reduce their risk of infection:

  • Seek, don’t find apps. Remind users that if they’re downloading an app, it should be something they looked for themselves – not an ad, unsolicited recommendation, emailed link, etc. Teach them to assume anyone offering an app for download is trying to infect their systems.
  • Consider antivirus protection. It’s not just for PCs – protecting against malware and mobile viruses is important, too.
  • Read up on permissions. Don’t grant any permissions to an app that you’re not comfortable with, including location tracking and access to your contacts, calendar, address book, social media accounts, etc.

Make Smarter Tech Decisions

Get the latest IT news, trends, and insights - delivered weekly.

Privacy Policy