Android Security and You

Let's revisit a topic that's been coming up lately. Your mobile security. We've all heard about different things happening around. Is it really so dire?

I'm no expert, definitely don't quote me on any of this but I don't think it's as gloomy as several sites claim. Of course there's going to be a rise in malware, especially with a platform like Android, it's out running competition. It's a well known fact that since Android is becoming more and more the dominant factor in the smartphone world that the so called "bad guys" were just around the corner waiting.

Why not provide a bit of statistics on the subject from some sources? "Mobile malware increased 155% in 2011, and 614% from March 2012 to March 2013, according to CNET and a white paper by Juniper Networks." The part that their not telling you is that this is not entirely representative of North America.

"Most smartphone hacks –92%, in fact – aimed for the Android platform. Data suggest that 77% of threats could have be eliminated if users were running the most current version of the operating system, which patches security threats using system updates." In a lot of cases it's the carrier responsibility to update your phone operating system to the current release.

When people talk about Android threats, there's some confusion generated by the lack of a clear-cut distinction between adware, aggressive adware, spyware and malware. The fastest growing numbers of Android threats are aggressive-ad-supported apps, but there has also been a significant spike in the development of Android Trojan programs and monitors, a category of applications that track users' behavior and geographical position. There's a number of application which are available on the Google Play Store that could be define as a "Trojan or Monitor" application because they track your location, allows for remote access to information about you, your phone,  your apps etc... But aren't malicious. I guess you can see the fine line now?

Now when you look at the above you might be going; "WTF". But to get infected it's actually a bit harder than you think. The Google Play Store isn't a safe haven some people do post malicious content but it's usually picked out fairly quickly. Other ways to get infected is with 0day exploit but then again you must be looking for it. 

The "normal average user" that just uses their phone as is with no modifications, no roms, no root, no unlocking, no unknown source install etc... The likely hood of getting infected very slim.

I want to hear back from you on what your habits are and what your doing to keep safe. So be sure to +1 this post and share.