Blue Coat report calls for caution against mobile attacks

Cyber Attack

Mobile attacks have become more vicious than ever and pornography returned as the number one threat vector in 2015, new Blue Coat report showed.

In the report entitled 2015 State of Mobile Malware Report, Blue Coat Systems said, cyber blackmail (mobile ransomware attacks) leads the way as a top malware type in 2015. It was followed by stealthy insertion of spyware on devices that allow attackers to profile behaviour and online habits.

“As we sleep, exercise, work and shop with our mobile devices, cyber criminals are waiting to take advantage of the data these devices collect, as evidenced by the types of malware and attacks we’re seeing,” said  Hugh Thompson, CTO and senior vice president, Blue Coat.

“The implications of this nefarious activity certainly carry over to corporate IT as organizations rapidly adopt cloud-based, mobile versions of enterprise applications, opening up another avenue for attackers,” Thompson said.

He added that a holistic and strategic approach to managing risk must extend the perimeter to mobile and cloud environments — based on a realistic, accurate look at the problem — and deploy advanced protections that can prioritize and remediate sophisticated, emerging and unknown threats.

The report further said porn is not ‘just’ back to the top, but it has become bigger than ever, jumping from 16.55 percent in 2014 to over 36 percent this year.

The report also cited WebAds, ransomeware, unwanted software and information leakage as causes of concern, with varying threat density.

Blue Coat said the market for mobile devices is booming and millions more of these devices will hit the street in the coming years.

It predicts mobile payment systems are set to grow, and services including contactless payment methods will incorporate additional security features, such as biometrics or two-factor authentication.

There are already too many mobile devices vulnerable to a host of threats in use. These devices will almost certainly not receive needed OS updates, and that will drive a market in security solutions that can support both traditional PC and mobile platforms.

Mobile carriers and handset makers are already working on plans to fast-track critical OTA updates to vulnerable devices, but the work is slow and it may be some time before this segment of the mobile market matures, the report concluded.

Arya MM

[email protected]

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