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Mobile Malware Threatens BYOD

By CIOReview | Monday, February 17, 2014

FREMONT, CA: Even though opinions are divided on Bring Your Own Device, its adoption is increasing. Just as it is gaining acceptance in government offices it has another enemy to overcome: mobile malware; writes Amber Corrin of FCW.

Reports from various technology companies point to there being a significant rise in the malicious content in mobile devices. According to a recent Alcatel-Lucent report, there has been a 20 percent increase in mobile malware in 2013. Cisco’s annual report reveals that Android was the prime target of malware in the year gone by–99 percent of malicious software was targeted at this popular mobile platform.

Reports suggest that the government is working on diffusing the issue. The National Security Agency and the National Institute for Standards and Technology are drafting guidelines and updating protection profiles to reflect the latest security threats, respectively.

“If 2011 was the year when mobile malware gained traction, especially in Android-land, and 2012 was the year of mobile malware diversification, then 2013 saw mobile malware come of age,” read Kaspersky Lab’s report. The firm has a collection of 148,778 mobile malware samples, with 104,421 found in 2013 alone.

According to an October 2013 presentation by Android Security Chief Adrian Ludwig, less than 0.001 percent of application installs are able to evade the platform’s multi-layered defense system, a figure that is largely in contradiction to those given by more recent reports. The extent to which a suspicious application is actually harmful is unclear, but if Android continues to be a victim of such malicious software, it will definitely pose a threat to BYOD.