Mobile devices have become a priority target for cybercriminals. Every day, millions of smartphones suffer cyberattacks that seek to gain control of their owners’ personal data and, in most cases, use mobile applications as a gateway. Do you know how to identify fraudulent APPs and not install them on your smartphone?
Fraudulent PPPs: A Very Real Problem
- Did you know that mobile phones have become the main gateway to the Internet? In Spain, nine out of ten Internet users use it to connect to the Internet.
- With these data, it is not surprising that smartphones are in the crosshairs of cybercriminals and that fraudulent APPs have become a very real problem: in the first quarter of 2017 alone, 750,000 malicious applications were detected, which, according to G Data data means that every hour 350 new fraudulent APPs appear that seek to keep your personal data and all the information you store on your smartphone.
- The problem is so real that one of the most prominent issues during the last Google developer conference has been the announcement of the implementation of Google Play Protect, which will be installed as standard in the Play Store, to detect and slow the progress of Fraudulent APPs that ‘filter’ every day in the company’s official store.
Top Cybersecurity Threats For Smartphones
What are the main ones for the cybersecurity of smartphones? The evolution of our mobile connection makes cyber threats for mobile devices very similar to those that we can find on a PC, although taking advantage of the lack of security measures that smartphones still suffer from.
Do you have your smartphone protected? Beware of these threats against your cybersecurity that, in many cases, can come from the use or download of fraudulent APPs:
- Mobile Trojans that allow you to take control of your mobile device and that use fraudulent and malicious APPs as the main route of entry.
- Man-in-the-middle attacks that, through insecure or public WIFI connections, open access to all the data you store on your smartphone. Be careful with the network you connect to.
- Ransomware that is increasingly directed towards mobile devices (especially Android) and that could hijack your mobile and demand the payment of a ransom. Remember the global cyber attack by Wannacry?
- Mobile Greyware is also installed from the download of fraudulent APPs that cause the user’s browsing data to be exposed to subscribe or bombard them with unwanted advertising on their smartphone.
- Phishing and Smishing that, either through the famous discount coupons or hooks via WhatsApp or through SMS with false promotions, access the personal data (accounts, passwords, passwords …) of the owner of the smartphone.
- Zero-day attacks: that are installed from the download of fraudulent, apparently harmless APPs and that when the time comes they activate a malicious code to steal all the information that you save on your mobile device.
Keys To Identify Fraudulent PPPs
The threats are there and they are going to be more and more dangerous and damaging. Putting them on the brakes depends, in large part, on your knowledge and the responsible use you make of your mobile device. Do you know how to identify fraudulent APPs that, sometimes, sneak into the official stores of both Google and Apple and infect millions of Android and IOS users? Take note of these tips:
- Attentive to the ratings of other users. Before downloading an application in any store you should stop and worry about looking at what other users of the APP say that you plan to install on your device. Do not remain alone in the first opinions (this trick is usually used by fraudulent APPs), dive a little into the history of the ratings and comments to verify that it is reliable.
- Download only in official stores. It is a basic cybersecurity measure for downloading any content to your smartphone. Although fraudulent APPs are sometimes sneaked in, the incidence rate is less than 1%, and, as we have indicated, Google is already taking measures to prevent malicious applications in its official store. Configure the security of your device (in the settings section and allow download only from official sites).
- Look at the developer. This is another of the basic checks when downloading an application for your smartphone. Who is the developer of the application? What other applications does the company have in official stores? What other users say about it? The name of the developer always appears next to the name of the application you want to download.
- Check permissions. Indispensable for any application, but much more if possible to avoid downloading fraudulent APPs on your smartphone. If you hit the download button and find that the permissions it claims are excessive for the service it offers, abort the operation. Do you want to know more about what permissions you authorize with the APPs? Look at this post .
- Beware of miracle applications. Sometimes trying to be the most original has a high price. Avoid those APPs that promise surprising results or that will add incredible functionality to your mobile. It is usually one of the hooks that fraudulent APPs use.
- Watch out for game guides and knockoffs. The popularity of certain games (Pokemon Go, Clash Royale, Super Mario …) has been the perfect breeding ground for millions of devices to be infected after downloading cheat guides or imitations of official games that were actually fraudulent APPs.
- Pay attention to the number of downloads. These imitations that we have told you about in the previous point are usually very well done, so it is advisable to look at the number of downloads the APP has to make sure that it is not an imitation (and since you should check one by one of the tips on this list).
All these security tips can be summed up in one: apply common sense and remember that the best security system on the Internet is you.