Using Android phones means you are on the popular zone as the Google mobile platforms remains the king of smartphone. But there is a downside and a huge one at that - the threat of suffering security attacks.
And according to security expert F-Secure, being the dominant mobile OS that it is today, Android has attracted the attention of more possible breaches and frauds. A report by the firm revealed that 79 per cent of the malicious softwares detected in 2012 were designed for Android deployment.
F-Secure also pointed out that Android phones are increasingly in the radar of malware authors. From a mere 11.25 per cent of possible malware infection in 2010, the number bloated to more than 66 per cent in the following year.
With the growing attractiveness of handsets like the Galaxy S3, the Galaxy Note 2 and Google Nexus 4, it is inevitable that crooks will also find the platform ripe for incursions.
The report, in fact, mapped out a migration trend in the past years, in which malware developers shifted their focus from Symbian and Windows, respectively, the OS owned by Nokia and Microsoft, to Android.
Nokia phones were the main subject of organised malware attacks in the past few years, F-Secure said, registering possible threats of more than 62 per cent in 2010 then posting a decline of about 30 per cent in 2011.
In 2012, the numbers were down to 19 per cent, indicating that attackers lost interest as Android emerges as the dominant kind, surpassing even Apple's iOS, which despite its near equal status with Google's platform has only posted 0.7 per cent of all likely compromised discovered last year.
In light of the report, security experts advise Android gadget users to exercise vigilance in safeguarding the security of their gadgets and that of their personal data.
For good measures, security software must be installed on tablets and smartphones, many of which are available as free downloads on Google Play.
And while it is not 100 per cent protected, the best bet for now in getting safe applications is still via the official Android market, where theoretically all apps submissions undergo vetting procedures.
Also, Symantec, maker of Norton security suites, strongly recommends accessing only secured network, which usually is the users' home network or the one that came with their handset plan.
The warning means everyone should observe caution in connecting to public Wi-Fis found on bars, café, airports and hotels as they present easy gateways for hackers to dispatch malwares.
Finally, it is a good practice too to limit the use of your device to yourself. The less hand tinkering with your gadget, the higher your security will be.
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