Mobile Device Poll’s Chilling Results

poll measuring user fears of cyber threats to mobile devices is the latest reminder that smart phones can be quite insecure. The poll is titled “What is your biggest fear with mobile devices in your enterprise,” and 311 people participated on SANS Institute’s Internet Storm Center website. Respondents said monitoring for information leaks was among the biggest fear at 46.3 percent. Untrusted applications came in at 15.1 percent, malware attacks at 14.8 percent, securing the applications at 7.1 percent, and wireless access at 7.1 percent.

Alan Paller, director of research at SANS, said in 2009 that mobile devices could become a target for hackers, although computer networks would remain the subject for traditional cyberattacks. “It’s true that we all carry these devices, and I see a rapidly increasing number of attacks against these devices, particularly to make them zombies to complement the PC bots,” which spam or send viruses to other computers on the Internet, he is quoted as saying.

A year later we’ve seen just that come to the fore. SANS ran another poll in July asking respondents if they were scanning for malware on their phones. Of the 540 respondents, 15.3 percent answered they were, and 18.1 percent who were looking for malware on their mobile device found it. The percentage of people who were not scanning ranged consistently from 82 to 86 percent. Based on those numbers, 83 of 457 people who responded who were not looking for malware would be infected.

So as you continue to use your phone for more of your daily routines be a conscious user and treat it like a threat.


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