Lookout warns on app security pitfalls - Mobile World Live

Lookout warns on app security pitfalls

07 SEP 2012

Mobile security company Lookout warned that “mobile malware has now become a profitable industry”, with users advised to “use caution when downloading apps” to avoid potential dangers.

It said that customers who obtain apps “outside of a trusted source” have a higher chance of encountering malware.

The advice given is to “only download apps from trusted sources like Google Play and the [Apple] App Store”.

“Read user reviews and verify the developer is trusted. Be wary of apps that promise a paid app for free”, it continued.

Geography also plays a role, with Lookout noting that “people in Russia, Ukraine and China have a significantly higher likelihood of encountering malware than elsewhere”.

Part of the appeal of mobile for malware distribution is its integration with payment mechanisms such as premium SMS, which provide a way for miscreants to generate revenue.

Privacy is also an important consideration for mobile users. Lookout said that this year, “a significant portion of privacy problems arose from aggressive advertising techniques, including pushing out-of-app ads and accessing personally identifiable information without user notification”.

Lookout estimates that five percent of Android apps include these aggressive ad networks, and these apps have been downloaded more than 80 million times.

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Steve Costello

Steve works across all of Mobile World Live’s channels and played a lead role in the launch and ongoing success of our apps and devices services. He has been a journalist...More

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