As more people around the world are using smartphones and downloading apps, bank, and conduct business, there’s more and more of an incentive for criminals to attack phones- as they used to attack PCs in the past.Crimeware kits, which let novice cyber thieves create their own viruses with a few mouse clicks, have been behind the huge rise in the number of malicious programs that plague PCs.
Now, such kits are starting to be made for mobile malware.
What criminals like about mobiles is their intrinsic connection to a payment plan. This made it far easier to siphon off cash than with PC viruses.
All phones that have access to SMS are able to charge money to their phone bill via premium rate SMS processes.
Almost 70% of the millions of scams try to steal cash by surreptitiously racking up premium-rate charges.
Malicious apps made it hard for people to realise they were being scammed, because they could work surreptitiously while phone owners used a different application.
Alongside the growth in mobile malware is a rise in junk or spam text messages being sent to phones – many involving fake offers in an attempt to sucker the recipient into revealing their credit card number.
The ways to keep your mobile phone safe are:
- Stick to official marketplaces and app stores
- Be suspicious of offers that look too good to be true
- Check your bill for rogue charges
- Be wary of sites offering for free apps that cost money elsewhere
- Be extra wary of Android apps as Google’s vetting is not as strict as Apple’s.