Android? Safe?

Android, since its release around two years ago has been getting quite popular in the mobile world industry. Why? Because it is free and has lots of available applications due to the openness of the application to support open source and third party applications.

Considering it is open source, many people thought it is safer than the Windows Mobile or the Symbian phones, but actually, Android is not that safe as compared to these two mobile phone operating systems.

Recently, two new spywares have been lurking around the operating system.  These two threats, , “SW.SecurePhone” and “SW.Qieting”, can release an unsettling amount of personal information from an infected phone.

SW.SecurePhone is an application (or a program) that has no icon and runs on the background. The program gathers data from the text messages that a user receives and sends, call logs and pictures and uploads this to a remote unknown server. This program can also collate the phones location information and record sounds around the device.

SW.Qieting forwards your incoming SMS and e-mail messages to a monitoring device.

These programs are acquired via the internet. Since neither these programs have icons in it, it is hard to tell at a glance whether you are infected or not. To help users stay safe, the following advices are recommended:

  1. Download apps from trusted sources.
  2. Pay close attention to the app permissions. An application should not request more that what it offers in its features.
  3. Be alert on the unusual fees on your phone bill as this is a sign that your phone is infected.
  4. Install a trusted security application (an anti-virus or an anti-malware software) to protect your phone.

Android still gains popularity. This means that more malware makers will begin to target the platform. So if you have an Android phone (also applicable to Windows or Symbian mobiles), it can be worth your while to get an anti-virus software in it. It is better to be safe than sorry.

 

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