Every day more than 1,000 Android phones are under cyber-attack in the UK.
Research from mobile app 360 Security shows that its UK customers were the target of unsuccessful virus and Trojan attacks every day in the first quarter of 2016, therefore the total figure for attacks on Androids across the UK are likely to be much higher.
The most popular attack type discovered in the UK is a “malicious charge” virus. This attack causes additional costs to be added by stealth on the consumer's mobile phone bill. During Q1 of 2016, 86.83 percent of UK users were the targets of such attacks, higher than the global attempts of 76.14 percent. Most people are unaware that they've been victimised by such an attack until their monthly phone bill comes in.
The attacks can take various forms involving background activity while turning the phone into a zombie and costing the user money. The virus downloads large files without advising the user, sends premium rate SMS messages, and operates click fraud schemes where a specific pay-per-click web page is opened each time the phone is unlocked. A single user can rack up thousands of pounds daily for the cyber-criminal behind the fraud.
“Most people only think of viruses and Trojans attacking PC desktops and laptops, but the truth is that mobile phones are increasingly becoming a target for hackers. Given that we now use them for online banking, shopping, booking tickets, sending personal information and much more, this is not surprising. Most of us are already aware of the need to install anti-virus software on a new PC desktop or laptop, but the high security risks of mobile phones are only now becoming recognised. This data underlines how important it is for people to change their attitudes to mobile security and start taking it seriously,” said Mr Carpentier, brand manager, 360 Security.