Mobile Advertising And Porn Are The Biggest Mobile Malware Threats

MobilitySecurityWorkspace

Malvertising is becoming a bigger mobile malware threat as online advertising becomes moe common

Mobile advertising is rapidly becoming the biggest threat to mobile users, with one fifth of all encounters with malware coming from malvertising, which involves the placement of malicious links on legitimate advertising networks.

According to research from security firm Blue Coat, malicious adverts appear on 12 percent of all requests for content on mobile devices and account for 20 percent of all infections, but pornography is even more effective, as X-rated materials account for just one percent of all requests but are responsible for 16 percent of all infections.

The majority of mobile infections are caused through social engineering tactics that trick users into changing settings, granting permissions or installing applications, such as fake anti-virus software.

Mobile malware

Slavoljub PantelicWhile social engineering scams have traditionally occurred on social networks, mobile users are subjected to more adverts than PC users and have been conditioned to accept them as normal, even trust them.

Mobile malware is still largely limited to unwanted applications and premium SMS scams, with Blue Coat recommending that users never download software outside of curated application stores such as Google Play or Apple’s App Store.

However the firm says that declining PC sales and the rise of mobile devices make it surprising that there isn’t more mobile malware. Blue Coat attributes this to the absence of an underground economy for cybercriminals to purchase exploit kits and new vulnerabilities or to rent botnets.

In addition, Blue Coat says nearly all mobile malware comes from social engineering and it has yet to see any malicious software which has broken the security model of the phone.

However a separate report from Trend Micro suggests that Chinese hackers are developing ever more sophisticated hacking tools to target mobile users, with mobile malware kits available for as little as £10 on the black market.

What do you know about Internet security? Find out with our quiz!

Read also :
Click to read the authors bio  Click to hide the authors bio