Mobile threats doubled in 2010 according to Kaspersky Labs

How familiar are you with the existence of mobile threats? Have you encountered one? The only one I know of is that of the iPhone which requires to be jailbroken. I know trojans infecting mobile phones are feasible but I really haven’t heard any reports of threats locally. Until Kaspersky Labs released an alarming news about mobile threats.

According to software security firm, Kaspersky Labs, over 1,000 variants of 153 “œfamilies” of mobile device threats were found between August 2009 and December 2010, accounting for 65 percent increase during this period. This is mainly due to the emergence of phones running on Android platform where 15 malicious programs were already detected since August 2010.

However, most mobile threats continue to target the Java 2 micro edition (J2ME) platform, which is supported by a huge number of mobile devices. That means it is not only smartphones that are at risk of infection, but basic mobile phones as well. The second most-targeted platform is Symbian, with Python in third place.

At the end of 2010, the mobile malware situation was as follows:

platformthreats

Before 2010, SMS-based trojans were used by virus writers as their sole money-making scheme. Since then, they developed threats targeting different platforms. Other unlawful schemes such as redirecting mobile internet banking users to phishing sites and stealing passwords sent by banks to mobile phones were also used. Mobile threats have become more complex than ever and include the emergence of mobile bots and other remotely-controlled software.

Kaspersky Lab predicts an increase in the number of vulnerabilities found on mobile platforms, as well as an increase in the number of threats for android and the continued use of short numbers by cybercriminals.

So is there a mobile antivirus yet? Well there is but it’s not needed yet. Common sense is still the best protection against these threats. Don’t install apps just because you can. Run a check on the app developer or read app reviews before installing dubious ones.

[Securelist]
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  • I haven’t used Kaspersky Antivirus yet. I’m pretty much OK with Norton.