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Android malware numbers are exploding

The Android ecosystem is becoming a true heaven for malware software and malicious apps, Trend Micro warned. The Tokyo-based security company said that during the second quarter of the year, the number of malware samples found on Android-based devices was more than four times larger than the first quarter.

According to data from Trend Micro, 25,000 malware samples for Android were detected during the second quarter compared to the “only” 6,000 malicious specimen found in the first quarter of 2012. The number was far higher than the company initially estimated (11,000 malware samples).

Trend Micro numbers suggest that Bouncer, the security feature that Google advertised as a reliable protection for the Android ecosystem and marketplace (Play), has been pretty ineffective: during the second quarter 17 malicious apps were delivered via Google Play, and users downloaded them 700,000 times before their removal. Trend Micro foresees that in the third quarter of the year there will be 38,000 malware samples infecting as much Android devices, and about 129,000 samples during the fourth quarter.

“The growth in Android malware demonstrates sustained and focussed criminal interest in the mobile platform and particularly in the Android operating system”, Trend Micro’s Rik Ferguson stated. The “mobile web” will give cyber-criminals new avenues to pursue their malicious intents, the Japanese company said, so “consumers need to use care when downloading and installing apps and should be considering installing antimalware on their mobile devices”.

Source: The Inquirer.

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