99% of new mobile malware targets which operating system?

Mobile & tablets

by Joe Curtis| 29 April 2014

We know it’s not going to be Windows Phone, but which is it?

An overwhelming 99% of new mobile threats discovered by F-Secure in the first quarter of 2014 target Android smartphones.

The cyber security firm identified 275 separate malware threats that attacked vulnerabilities in the Google-backed open source operating system, compared with just one iPhone and one Symbian.

The latest statistics demonstrate a rise of 8% from the 91% of 149 hacker threats that targeted Android this time last year.

A new threat recently unveiled by Lookout Mobile Security was a piece of cryptocurrency malware that managed to sneak onto the Google Play store.

BadLepricon was hidden inside fake home screen apps and drained battery life while secretly diverting phones' computing power to the process of mining bitcoins.

"These developments give us signs as to the direction of malware authors," said Mikko Hyppönen, chief research officer at F-Secure.

"We'll very likely see more of these in the coming months. For example, mobile phones are getting more powerful, making it possible for cybercriminals to profit by using them to mine for cryptocurrencies."

Britain experienced the highest level of mobile malware in 2014 so far according to F-Secure, with one malware file found for every 500 users.

The US, India and Germany all had five to 10 malware blocked for every 10,000 users.

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