A new Cisco security report reveals 99 percent of all mobile malware is “encountered” by Android devices. In fact, it argues that Google’s mobile software was a cesspool of mobile malware last year, as it also experienced 91 percent of Web exploits targeting Java as well, with a 71 percent encounter rate with all forms of Web-delivered malware; iPhone users, on the other hand, experienced a 14 percent encounter rate. Despite Google improving its mobile software in some pretty substantial ways—new features, better optimization, UI tweaks—targeted malware against the OS actually went up quite a bit year-over-year.
Cisco’s annual report was, naturally, shared by Apple’s Senior Vice President of Marketing, Phil Schiller, in an attempt to highlight an issue that has stuck with Android since day one. Android has been victim to all kinds of security concerns beginning in the early days, mostly through apps making it onto Google Play. And even despite Eric’s Schmidt’s insistence that Android is “more secure” than iOS, the evidence would suggest otherwise.
In its report, Cisco notes that mobile malware is a logical and emerging “area of exploration” for developers, finding that Android users are most at risk. “Many encounters involve phishing, likejacking, or other social engineering ruses, or forcible redirects to websites other than expected,” Cisco said in its report. Android users are clearly more at risk, according to Cisco, but so long as you remain diligent and be mindful of what sites you visit and what you download, you’re unlikely to fall victim to any mobile malware.
Cisco has a few charts breaking down the many different “malware families” found in 2013; SMSSend apparently accounted for 98 percent of all Android malware. You can check out Cisco full report regarding malware trends—not just in mobile—at the source link below.