Android App Security - An endless Tom and Jerry Fight !

Along with the alarming growth of the user base, android is the most vulnerable mobile OS of today. Android, being an open platform for publishing of app have made it highly accessible to developers, and also to hackers. From Snapchat to Uber to even BMW Connect Drive, apps have been hanging in a very unsafe position. On one hand the apps claim to be the safest mode when one shares financial info like credit card details, on the other hand, it’s the most unsafe when it comes to sharing credit card info, pictures and even conversations.

Android has given rise to high amount of vulnerabilities, malware, spyware and even ransomware! Although Android has security features built into the operating system that significantly reduce the frequency and impact of application security issues, it still is a prime target for hackers. It has, today, grown so significant that many applications continue to face challenges pertaining to security.

More than 16 million phones/devices have been affected due to malwares since last year, which is a rise from 0.55% to 0.68%. Recently, Google also stopped providing security updates for devices running on Android 4.3 Jellybean and earlier.The world is using creativity to develop useful apps and at the same time are developing remediations to safeguard it from hackers. High-alert and solutions seem like a Tom and Jerry fight! Endless war against the upcoming unethical hackers.

The top three infectors discovered are Adware.Uapush, Trojan.Ackposts and SMSTracker. These malwares and spywares cause threat to the personal, information, contact details, browser history and even the location of the users. All three affect Android devices, and are typically downloaded and installed by hiding them in harmless-seeming applications.

The steady increase in mobile adware and malware is a sign of the future ! Future where the applications will not only hack the credit card info but will also ask for the ransom/membership fee from the user. Unsafe applications today have begun to look legit and thus ask for a membership fee from the users, in order to claim to be a genuine app.

"They [the authors] are making money off of getting stuff installed on that machine, so I don't think they really care what they are installing," said McNamee, director of Motive Security Labs at Alcatel-Lucent, a mobile security firm.

BlackBerry and iOS devices accounted for less than 1 percent of infections, but the operating systems are not immune to attack and could be targeted if the payoff is attractive, the company said. Android now needs to rethink over the way they have been accessible to the public, ideally for good, but practically for worse!

Europe, India, Russia, US, and many more countries have been affected due to the mal-functioning of the app security. The need of the hour is to find out what would suit the world, and what could keep them safer.

Published on Feb 17, 2015
Written by Team Appknox


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