Does My Smartphone Need Antivirus Software?

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Up to now, there has never been a significant outbreak of cell phone malware. Yet several security vendors – such as Trend Micro, Norton and Kaspersky offer mobile solutions of the security packages. It is reasonable to wonder whether such software is truly necessary for the absence of a visible virus threat.

In actuality, viruses in the conventional sense – programs that spread by making copies of themselves are very rare nowadays even on PCs. Definitely the most common way to get infected is through a dodgy download from a seemingly innocuous site. Since most of the major smartphones feature an Internet browser and support third party software, that is a danger as applicable to mobile devices as it’s to some iPad, Mac or PCs

In certain ways, cellular phones are better defended than regular PCs. That is partially because they were designed in an era where online threats are well known. Mobile operating systems have security built at a basic level: It would not be possible to give Windows that type of security without breaking compatibility with applications and ways of working with the computer which dates back over two decades.

Since cellular phones are used more casually than computers, they can also manage to put more restrictions on the consumer. Computer malware may be eliminated if Microsoft had to approve each application before it could be run on Windows, but when it attempted to do this there would be uproar.

With Apple’s iPhone, however, exactly such a system is in place – which makes it very tough for rouge applications to get onto the telephone – and millions of satisfied customers don’t have any complaints whatsoever.

Mobile threats

Though your smartphone is perhaps less vulnerable to malware in the Windows PC, there are still dangers out there, Many online threats, for example, don’t involve applications whatsoever: phishing scams where fake banking sites steal your login details, run just as well on your locked-down iPhone or Blackberry as on an unsecured PC

In actuality, the scam works better on a mobile platform: the smaller display makes it more difficult to spot telltale errors on fake sites. Web addresses may be truncated from the browser, hiding the wrong URL’s. Against threats such as your only defense is vigilance and possibly, security applications that can warn you if a site has a dodgy reputation. Webster Consulting recommends not using cellular and public areas for online banking as prevention is much better than cure.

Another threat is imitation applications – programs that are disguised as games or applications but security track your covertly monitor your computer or run malicious processes at exactly the exact same time. Even though Apple, Microsoft, and Google all have more or less strict approval processes set up at their official program stores, these are not guaranteed to be foolproof, and if you download from different sources you do not have the wisp of reassurance. In cases like this, your only hope is mobile security software that can determine the malevolent code until it strikes.

What happens in the event that you do get caught out? Mobile phones are an excellent chance for criminals since they are directly connected to a payment method. By way of example, a rogue application could operate by sending multiple text messages to a premium number, racking up enormous costs over days and weeks. In reality, just such a program, disguised as a music player and dispersed for Android, was discovered by Kaspersky in 2010.

Although mobile malware has not become a widespread problem, it is clearly possible and it is becoming a more attractive prospect for offenders by the day. So while you might not feel the necessity to put in a security suite in your phone right now, it is important not to be complacent the first outbreak could strike at any moment.