Mobile malware on the increase as bad apps attack

First it was your computer and now it’s your phone, as security researcher Kaspersky picks up on even more reason to have some form of security software on an Android phone.

According to a new report by internet security developers Kaspersky Lab, we have more reason than ever to have security software on our mobile devices, tablets included, as over 300,000 malicious mobile apps have been detected by its products in the past few months, which is already an increase on what it was in the first few months of the year.

More apps means more risk for smartphone owners, especially if their devices don’t have protection on them, and Kaspersky is confirming this, with more than 1.5 million malicious apps installed on devices in the past quarter.

These apps are coming to you not necessarily from your local app store, but mostly from advertisements designed to trick you into thinking you’re getting the app from somewhere trustworthy, with trojans making up most of the malware out there.

Much of this is for financial gain, with new types of security attacks kicking in such as one designed to infiltrate hotel WiFi networks to gain access to devices using them, while ransomware attacks are on the increase too, locking down your most used files and expecting you to pony up the cash to unlock them, usually in bitcoin currency.

Attacks and exploits like these are yet more indication that security software is a must have for computer owners — Mac and PC alike — but with mobiles being targeted too, it’s now something that owners of a smartphone should be thinking about. Less so with the iPhone at the moment as Apple tends to lock that one down pretty well, but definitely with an easy way of installing malware and security exploits to Android devices without realising it, this should be factored in.

“With 5.6 million cases of attempted theft from online bank accounts, and cybercriminals continually developing sophisticated attacks, the use of high quality cybersecurity products has never been more important,” said David Emm, Principal Senior Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab.

“It’s vital that all those using the Internet – both individuals and organizations – protect themselves from these growing threats.”