Malware threats: more than a billion Android at risk

Security is one of the key aspects in the experience of using a smartphone, although it normally goes unnoticed until the moment we become victims of a cyber attack. In this post, we will talk about the security risk on Android devices.

More than 1 billion Android device at risk

According to a study of Which?, an English company specializing in consumption, 2 out of 5 active mobiles would have major security problems. Given the official Android figures, this would make the number exceed 1 billion devices at risk.

This study has used Android version numbers as a base, considering that Google constantly publishes security updates for versions from Android from 7.0 onwards, which means that 42.1% of mobile phones do not receive, nor receive, security updates. In the 2.5 billion Android users, outdated users amount to 1,110 million.

In the study of Which? They took over 5 old phones and collaborated with AV-Comparatives, a company specialized in antivirus tests. In all the mobiles tested, it was easy to carry out attacks with Joker and Bluefrag malware.

In regards to Google, they have stressed the importance of Project Treble and Project Mainline, their latest innovations that make the system more modular. It is something that will fix many problems since users will receive security improvements without even realizing it. However, these developments have arrived with Android 8, 9 and 10 and do not fix the problem of current users.

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Some useful safety tips

Be careful what you download: today the biggest risk factor is in the downloads of non-reliable applications. As much as we have Google Play Protect, these filters are not perfect and in many cases there are applications that may be potentially sneak in. Also, do not rely on copies of applications that are very popular or “free” versions of paid applications.

Be attentive to where you click: phishing attacks usually replicate emails and trusted pages with a dark background, and they really aren’t that reliable.

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Avoid having important information on a mobile whose last security update was two years or elder, it is advisable to avoid having information that we do not want to lose under any circumstances. Special emphasis on payment information.

Backup your data: some attacks are capable of hijacking your information (what is commonly known as ransomware). Have several
backups, on different devices.

To some extent, you can use an antivirus. Although it is true that as a general rule it is not necessary for you to have an antivirus. But on devices that have become obsolete in security updates may be helpful.

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