Just because you don’t hear much about cyberthreats involving smartphones doesn’t mean they don’t exist. At a time when phones are being used for an increasing variety of business and everyday tasks, ignoring the possibility of a mobile cyberattack could be disastrous.
Mobile malware MO
Mobile malware can be just as harmful to a business’s network as infected desktops and laptops are. Potential problems include overcharges on phone bills, stolen data, intercepted messages, phishing attacks, and fake notifications to one’s contact list.
Most examples of malware come from applications downloaded from third-party app stores. These give hackers access to passwords, user account information, and other sensitive personal data. Since many business users link their Android devices to each other, malware could transfer across multiple devices with ease.
Who is responsible?
The burden doesn’t fall solely on smartphone users. App stores are responsible, too. In one instance, malware-ridden banking and weather apps became available in the Google Play Store. Victims were urged to update their phones with the latest security patches in response to the issue.
How to avoid mobile malware
The Google Play Store isn’t 100% secure, but downloading from established app stores — and not from little-known and less secure ones — reduces the probability of downloading malicious apps. In cases when an infected app makes its way to the store and starts getting lots of downloads, Google will be quick to remove it and make everyone aware of the risks of using that app.
Despite app stores’ best efforts, however, it’s nearly impossible to prevent mobile malware from getting through. That’s why it pays to read user reviews where infected users post detailed warnings. Also, regularly updating your mobile device’s operating system and security software helps prevent infection, as the latest versions are patched against the latest known cyberthreats.
Malware doesn’t discriminate, so it will find a way to infect your device if your software isn’t up to date. To find out whether your business devices are safe and fully protected, consult our cybersecurity experts today.