Is A New Android On Your Christmas List?
If you have a new Android on your Christmas list you may want to think twice. It might bring a whole new set of headaches to deal with.
Recent research by Juniper Networks found there is a 472% increase in Android malware samples since July 2011. Even worse? As the Android market explodes, malware-tainted apps are expected to rise along with third-party app stores. Android is currently the most targeted device for all mobile malware development.
Shocking? While it might seem shocking at first, the reality is that people are buying smart phones in droves and the malware that has dogged PCs has now moved to the new targets.
Even with all the known problems of malware, the Android OS is expected to win approval from the NSA to be used on "secret" military networks, even though Droids are "among the biggest government cyber menaces," reported Nextgov.
Network security firm, M86 Security Labs, forecasts one of the greatest cyber dangers that agencies should worry about is hackers attacking federal employees via their Droids brought into work. "The Android is very much a victim of its own success because any developer can publish innovative -- or malicious -- software applications to Google's Android," M86 vice president for technical strategy Bradley Anstis told Nextgov.
Lookout Mobile Security split the threat to mobile devices into application-based threats like malware, spyware and privacy threats; web-based threats like phishing scams, drive-by downloads and browser exploits; network-based threats such exploiting networks and wi-fi sniffing; and physical threats like lost or stolen mobile devices.
Websense Security Labs predicts that in 2012 there will be "1,000+ different mobile device attacks coming to a smartphone or tablet near you."
Experts agree. It is estimated that in 2012, more than 1,000 different variants of exploits, malicious applications, and botnets will be infecting that Android glued to your hand and plugged into your head.
Social Engineering Scams
Even more concerning. The number of people who fall victim to believable social engineering scams will skyrocket when the bad guys find a way to use mobile location-based services to design hyper-specific geolocation social engineering attempts.
To add even more concern about the Android, a McAfee report also confirms that the Android OS is the primary target for mobile malware, having jumped 37% since last quarter.If you're thinking about adding a new Android you may want to think long and hard to make sure you don't fall prey to the looming threats.