Mobile security: Protecting yourself while on the go


At the tail end of 2016, we crossed an internet usage threshold to little fanfare: Worldwide, more people used phones and tablets to access the web than conventional computers like desktops and laptops. Mobile use is averaging more than three hours a day or email usage, texting, engaging with apps and social media and surfing the web.

Here’s one big problem: As more people move to mobile, so do the bad guys who want to exploit this boom. And while most desktop users have some form of security on their computers, the same is not true for mobile device users. While this security report is from a year ago, things haven’t changed much and the statistics are grim:

The report found that only 32 percent of iPad users had security software installed on their devices, and 26 percent of iPhone users said the same. For those owning Android tablets, 65 percent said they had security software installed, while 60 percent of Android smartphone owners have security software installed. 83 percent of Windows-based tablet owners and 44 percent Windows Phone owners reported having security software installed.

If you think about the threat, it’s pretty scary. Most of us carry an enormous amount of personal information on our phones – just think about what you do on your phone: banking, bill paying, shopping, texting, searching, emailing, using apps. And it’s not just hackers we have to worry about accessing this private data – millions of phones are lost or stolen every year.

This short video from Kaspersky Lab, one of the largest global cybersecurity and anti-virus providers, shows the evolving threat.

Kaspersky talks about the Top 7 Mobile Security Threats: Smart Phones, Tablets, & Mobile Internet Devices – What the Future has in Store. The article identifies and describes the most serious threats, which include data leakage, unsecured WI-fi, network spoofing, phishing attacks, spyware, broken cryptography, and improper session handling.

To combat these threat, see 8 Ways to Increase Your Mobile Security Without Slowing It Down, which outlines 8 excellent best practice security tips. Malwarebytes, an excellent anti-malware software provider offers advice on the Top 10 ways to secure your mobile phone. The article notes that third party apps and lack of timely operating system updates are serious threats.

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