FBI and DHS label Android primary malware target

By , Aug 26, 2013

fbi

A number of Android security problems pose a threat to law enforcement officers using the Google mobile operating software.

According to an unclassified government report, 44 percent of Android users continue to use older versions of the software, opening themselves to numerous security threats, including malware infestation and malicious text messages.

According to the report, obtained from a group promoting public access to government data, Android is the “primary target” of security attacks, with 79 percent of threats…

Although the document released by Public Intelligence does not mention how many police, security, and other first responders use Android, the U.S. government has opened up to both Android and iOS amid the shrinking presence of federal stalwarts such as BlackBerry and Symbian.

In the note, labeled “for official use only”, Android is described as the “primary target for malware attacks due to its market share and open source architecture.”

As an increasing number of government employees use mobile devices it is “more important than ever to keep mobile operating systems patched and up-to-date”.

The base of Android users is notorious about avoiding updates to the operating system. Although newer versions of the mobile software were released, more than 40 percent of Android users use 2.3.3. to 2.3.7, which contain security holes that were later detected and fixed, according to the report.

Screen Shot 2013-08-26 at 20.48.58

Such lack of general updating is reflected in the report’s finding that 79 percent – nearly eight of every ten security breaches – occurs on the Android mobile platform. By comparison, 19 percent of security flaws focus on Symbian, while iOS, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile attract less than one percent of attacks.

This isn’t the first time the FBI has sounded the warning about Android’s insecurity. In 2012, the agency warned Android users in general, of malware hitting Android phones.

The moral of the story: keep your smartphone up-to-date.

Of course, owning an iPhone is about the easiest way to keep the nasties away. With such damning statistics, it is a wonder the feds don’t just ban non-current Android handsets as security risks.

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  • abdullah575

    every boday tommorow is iOS 7 beta 7 or GM !!!! tuesday 10000000000000%

    • Qasim Bashir

      how can u say for sure, any reliable source?

      • Kurt

        How can you doubt, “10000000000000%”…I think we should believe him. Don’t you?

      • Qasim Bashir

        how about now

  • Rowan09

    One of the problem is that the phone makers release the software update instead of getting them right away from Google. Unless your using a premium device you may not even be able to update to the latest software.

    • Joseph

      Which is a problem with the phone makers, not Android in general. Technically, this problem branches off of the OS being open-source. Now, what needs to happen is to have the devices have an update process similar to Apple’s; update the device to a certain extent, usually two years worth, and then cut them off from updates. Skins aren’t needed, in my opinion, and one of the options that should be avaliable should be to select whether you want the skinned version (default, typically an older version of Android), or stock (an option when setting up the device, gets updates faster).

      Of course, in the interest of simplicity for consumers, this won’t happen, of course, but it’d be nice to be able to get the latest firmware possible for the device without it losing performance, without having to install a new ROM.

      • Rowan09

        That’s true it is more of a phone maker thing since they control when the OS is released to their phones. I don’t think this will change though but maybe law enforcement, etc should just use Google devices instead of a company brand device.

    • OMG

      “premium device” lol android and premium dont go together

      • Joseph

        Premium device as in a stock device. Stop being a troll, I’ve gotten four banned already. Let’s not add another.

      • OMG

        i have the right to say what i think all i said was that i don’t see any android phone as premium … please stop abusing your power and stalking and harassing me..

      • Joseph

        Harassing, haha. Also, stalking on a blog? Yeah, no. And you’re not sharing you’re opinion, you’re trolling. Your bad grammar reinforces that.

        Looking through your comments, you seem a whole lot like Gorgonphone.

      • OMG

        OMG DUDE… really? i stay on topic and am not breaking any rules on here at all .. you are really abusing your power and stalking me and harassing me… STOP.. we are all saying what we think and feel i am not hostile or profane to anyone..

      • Jimothy

        He’s not being. Troll, he’s being an idiot.

  • David Gitman

    ..

    • Maxim∑

      Beta 6 was the last one, we are now to close to the keynote for another beta.

  • OMG

    lolollol

  • abdullah575

    ios 7 beta 7 or GM will be tommorow

  • chumawumba

    Is anyone even surprised?

  • https://www.facebook.com/LP.lyrics.video Ghaith Al Hami

    iOS the best