Australian mobile users most vulnerable to security threats

Australian smartphone users appear to be most prone to threats to mobile apps based on an analysis of devices and apps around the world by mobile security specialist Lookout.

According to the Lookout App Threats Map, Australia topped the world with the highest percentage of mobile app threats detected (26.9%) per device, with iPhone users having a significantly higher chance of downloading a risky application than an Android one. user.

The findings are derived from Lookout’s security graph, which analyzes anonymously telemetry data from more than 200 million devices and 160 million apps. The data covers the period from February 2021 to March 2022.

“Australians may have become complacent when it comes to downloading applications to their phones at a time when the risks are greater than ever,” said Don Tan, senior director of Asia-Pacific and Japan at Lookout.

“Across the country, they use their phones to check in, order food and more – this common use of phones may have led to complacency about the applications they download. But they need to be more vigilant than ever,” he added.

Tan noted that crimes targeting smartphone users can appear low-risk and invisible – “until we see Australia on a red-colored map, with the highest number of application threats compared to its global counterparts. Then it starts to get very real.”

Amid growing mobile threats, Tan urged Australians to be more vigilant when downloading applications or else this number will rise and their financial and other personal information will continue to fall into the hands of criminals.”

“It’s important for people to check the links associated with everything they download, as well as the number of downloads and customer reviews in the app store,” he said.

In addition to Australia having the highest percentage of mobile app threats in the world, Lookout’s analysis found that the vast majority of these threats come from iOS (30.1%) rather than Android devices (1.2% ).

Tan said this indicated a degree of complacency among iOS users:Apple does a great job with mobile securityand because of this strong reputation, users are often lax with their own security practices.

“It’s dangerous to work assuming that every device you use is completely safe, regardless of manufacturer, and people should apply the same safety precautions to every device they use.”

Phil Hochmuth, vice president of enterprise mobility program and endpoint management at IDC, noted that as mobile becomes the most important end-user computing technology in the enterprise, security and risk teams need to think more broadly and strategically about how to secure the use of mobile devices and the data, systems and resources that those devices store and use.

“Mobile security is no longer a simple add-on technology to enterprise mobile device management architectures. Companies should see every smartphone and tablet in their organization as an extension of the company’s attack surface,” he said.

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