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Android Increasingly a Growing Target for Mobile Malware

By - Source: GantDaily | B 14 comments

58 percent of Android malware are root exploits and rogue software.

Google's mobile platform, Android, is increasingly becoming a key target for cybercriminals implementing malware.

According to a report from web security firm Blue Coat Systems, it found that 58 percent of Android malware is root exploits and rogue software. Android malware through malnets, which are networks that integrate malicious payloads, accounted for 40 percent of the total.

"The Android-based malware blocked by WebPulse included an Android root exploit and a variety of rogue Android software," Blue Coat noted. "Forty percent of Android malware was delivered via malnets, demonstrating how cybercriminals can successfully utilize embedded infrastructures to attack mobile users. In the most recent six months, WebPulse also blocked an increasing number of unique malicious Android applications."

The study also found that pornography is a key threat for Android mobile devices, but mobile users are said to visit porn sites less than 1 percent of the time.

In 2012, the most dangerous place for mobile users was pornography. More than 20 percent of the time that a user went to a malicious site, they were coming from a pornography site. It is important to note that mobile users are going to pornography sites less than 1 percent of the time. When they do visit pornography sites, though, they have a high risk of finding a threat.

Interestingly, when malware first moved to the Internet, pornography was one of the leading sources of it for desktop users. The prevalence of pornography as the leading threat vector for desktop users has ebbed, giving way to attacks that target much larger user populations, such as search engine poisoning.

In the desktop environment, pornography continued to fall as a threat vector as it became easier to target a large number of users on places like search engines or social networking sites.


Due to wireless phone carriers and handset manufacturers failing to launch existing software security fixes to devices within an acceptable time frame (some take at least a year), millions of Android smartphones are left vulnerable.

During the third quarter of 2012, the amount of Android malware increased by a significant proportion. A recent exploit, meanwhile, utilizes a user's own PC microphone to record victims.


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  • 6 Hide
    yowanvista , February 14, 2013 8:10 AM
    There is a difference between Malware and Scaremongering Apps. Security companies are repeating the malware mantra over and over, once for all do learn that there is ZERO Android Malware. You're faking a PC term and applying it to the Android ecosystem. Android Malware doesn't exist, those are just rogue Apps and those are installed by the user and NOT automatically like their PC cousins.

    Android uses Sandboxing and that also means that anti-virus apps are largely USELESS for protection (except for anti theft) for the very same reason, they don't have access to the low level system files, so they cannot protect anything.

    Those who claim that Android has 'Malware' have ZERO clue about how the platform works inside out.

    This is way too much, people don't know what crap they're sprouting.
  • 2 Hide
    fightingslu , February 14, 2013 8:20 AM
    ^^ And of course it is Zak Islam trying to Scare people about android devices.
  • -1 Hide
    maddad , February 14, 2013 8:28 AM
    yowanvistaThere is a difference between Malware and Scaremongering Apps. Security companies are repeating the malware mantra over and over, once for all do learn that there is ZERO Android Malware. You're faking a PC term and applying it to the Android ecosystem. Android Malware doesn't exist, those are just rogue Apps and those are installed by the user and NOT automatically like their PC cousins.Android uses Sandboxing and that also means that anti-virus apps are largely USELESS for protection (except for anti theft) for the very same reason, they don't have access to the low level system files, so they cannot protect anything.Those who claim that Android has 'Malware' have ZERO clue about how the platform works inside out. This is way too much, people don't know what crap they're sprouting.

    I believe you are missing the point. Since Malware is software that is intended to damage or disable; then yes there is Malware on Android. Also when Google upgrades Android it is not just to add more features. They are also adding more and more security features. The point they are trying to make is that Google puts out updates to Android but the phone manufactures don't pushed those updates (which contain security updates as well) out to the phone users. So if like me you are using an Android phone that is running version 2.3 it is not as secure as someone who has version 4.1. These days a phone is a PC in your pocket. So a lot of terms that used to only apply to PC's now apply to Smartphones as well.
  • Display all 14 comments.
  • -1 Hide
    SchizoFrog , February 14, 2013 9:03 AM
    The overall heading was awful as it is prone to the condescending replies of 'Oh really? Never realised'.

    However, this is actually serious issue as many of these mobile devices are often synced up to various PC's, Laptops, Tablets, etc... they become back doors in to your otherwise secure home system and even in to the business world as well.
  • 4 Hide
    bubuhubu , February 14, 2013 10:13 AM
    Just by reading title of the article, I can say it's Zak Islam's article.
  • 3 Hide
    house70 , February 14, 2013 10:22 AM
    cortneyfigel95kzmy co-worker's mom makes $73 hourly on the computer. She has been without a job for 7 months but last month her income was $19610 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read more on this site spam site removed

    Looks like Zak's articles are prime breeding grounds for spammers. Write an article about that, eh, Zak?
    maddadI believe you are missing the point. Since Malware is software that is intended to damage or disable; then yes there is Malware on Android. Also when Google upgrades Android it is not just to add more features. They are also adding more and more security features. The point they are trying to make is that Google puts out updates to Android but the phone manufactures don't pushed those updates (which contain security updates as well) out to the phone users. So if like me you are using an Android phone that is running version 2.3 it is not as secure as someone who has version 4.1. These days a phone is a PC in your pocket. So a lot of terms that used to only apply to PC's now apply to Smartphones as well.

    Fact is, you give permission for an app to run, you are the one that is to blame. By default, Android has quite a few enabled checkpoints, and you have to be actively lowering the defenses. Finally, if porn sites were prime sources for malware for desktops, why would anyone expect any different for mobile devices? Suckers can't really say "oh, but I didn't know..."
  • 2 Hide
    Tomtompiper , February 14, 2013 11:08 AM
    Is it possible for Tom's to fit an ignore button for articles by Zak? Or at least have some indicator on the link that it is by him so that I stop wasting my time following it?
  • 2 Hide
    acerace , February 14, 2013 5:25 PM
    TomtompiperIs it possible for Tom's to fit an ignore button for articles by Zak? Or at least have some indicator on the link that it is by him so that I stop wasting my time following it?


    Or filtering the stupid commenter? Gosh, I want one of those. Surely, the comment system will be much cleaner and more matured arguements.
  • 0 Hide
    sam_p_lay , February 14, 2013 7:30 PM
    I don't get what peoples' problem with Zak is. Feel free to enlighten me. I really hope it's more than just a reaction to his second name. I haven't seen any other Tom's writer attract so much criticism.

    Like acerace says, there's some really immature users on here voting down some comments above that made valid and reasoned arguments. I expect those same users will bury this comment.
  • 0 Hide
    dalethepcman , February 14, 2013 9:03 PM
    sam_p_layI don't get what peoples' problem with Zak is. Feel free to enlighten me. I really hope it's more than just a reaction to his second name. ....


    My problem with Zak and his "articles" is that he none of it is based on fact, all of it is copy and pasted from other sites, its always bashing anything that competes with Apple.

    Sorry to any Zak Islam fans(if there are any), but any tech writer would have a Facebook or g+ or LinkedIn profile showing that he/she is indeed a tech writer for Tomshardware. Zak is actually Wolfgang Gruener. He used to do the same crap pro Apple down with Microsoft and Google articles, but no longer does and this "Zak is lame" character magically appears from thin air. Wolfgang got tired of people bashing him for posting this crap, and used a pseudonym instead to make himself feel better.

    Go ahead and look for Wolfgang, Jane, Thomas, Chris, etc... they all have plenty of information about them on other social media sites. Zak Islam, the real person... hes a software developer at amazon, and if I were that guy I would start a defamation of character lawsuit against BoM.

    I also get a chuckle about the porn reference. Don't look at boobies on your phone, or you will give it a disease!!
  • 0 Hide
    sam_p_lay , February 18, 2013 9:14 AM
    I had no idea! I do recall people's comments about Gruener being an Apple fanatic. Would be good to see a response to this from Islam/Gruener.
  • 0 Hide
    andrerichards , April 20, 2013 8:22 PM
    Glad I moved off Android to iOS so many years ago. I loved Android but I don't want more headaches and hassles in my life. I have enough of this nonsense from Windows. Would like my phone to just be a phone and not require any babysitting. Early Android was exciting though--the promise of an open mobile platform, but that's proven a pipedream. Lately, it's become a veritable sh*tshow.
  • 0 Hide
    andrerichards , April 20, 2013 8:23 PM
    Glad I moved off Android to iOS so many years ago. I loved Android but I don't want more headaches and hassles in my life. I have enough of this nonsense from Windows. Would like my phone to just be a phone and not require any babysitting. Early Android was exciting though--the promise of an open mobile platform, but that's proven a pipedream. Lately, it's become a veritable sh*tshow.
  • 0 Hide
    Michaela Herz , May 15, 2013 9:37 AM
    I read this article on how to avoid malicious malware applications http://www.mevvy.com/articles/tips-to-avoid-installing-malicious-applications/
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