As the world has grown increasingly interconnected, so too has it grown increasingly vulnerable. While the ‘mobile era’ has undoubtedly produced more positive outcomes than negative side effects, it’s more important than ever to keep a pulse on the security concerns of our time.
Although you are more than likely keyed-in to the security threats facing your individual organization, it’s just as helpful to know what’s going on around the industry as a whole. And thankfully, in a new report, Symantec has examined security threats on a broad scale.
The study and subsequent report, titled “2018 Internet Security Threat Report” (ISTR) by Symantec, takes stock of the many security trends and threats impacting industry around the world. While we’d definitely recommend reading the full report to gain a broad perspective on what’s happening in the security world, one area of the report–mobile malware–is of particular interest to us here at App47.
Here’s the most startling fact cited in this report: the number of new mobile malware variants increased by 54% in 2016–up to 27,000 from 17,000 variants. With some 24,000 malicious mobile apps blocked each day, Symantec says that the problem is worsened by continuing use of older operating systems. In particular, they say, only 20% of Android devices are running the newest major OS version, while only 2.3% are on the latest minor release.
Also relevant here, and mentioned in the report, is “grayware”: apps that aren’t completely malicious, but can be troublesome. For example, 63% of grayware apps leak the device’s phone number, and grayware apps on the whole were up 20% in 2017. Even though these apps aren’t as downright malicious as flat-out malware, they’re still a significant security concern and should be monitored closely, especially within a closed corporate environment.
The biggest reminder from the latest Internet Security Threat Report? Don’t be complacent. Just as the world has grown more interconnected, and companies have seen more and more devices in the workplace, so too have mobile threats grown more complex and dangerous–all the more so if your company is unprepared. While there’s no one solution to perfectly mitigate risks, a managed approach to mobility can have a significant positive impact in terms of keeping the threat level low. Even if you can’t control every device on your network, having a sense of what’s being used and how, and being able to manage those apps that people use most frequently is a significant help.
There may be more mobile malware and security threats than ever before, but now is not the time to give up on enterprise mobility. Just the opposite, in fact. Taking a systematic approach to enterprise mobility management is the key to making sure your company isn’t the next victim of a preventable security breach.