More malware and cybersecurity breaches strike smartphones and broadband devices – report

25 Jul 2013

With the increase in the number of consumers worldwide using fixed and mobile broadband networks comes an increase in security threats to these networks, new data released by communications giant Alcatel-Lucent suggests.

Figures for the second quarter of 2013 by Alcatel-Lucent’s Kindsight subsidiary have revealed an increase in malware that hackers use to gain access to devices for corporate espionage, spying on individuals, theft of personal information, generating massive quantities of spam, denial of service attacks on business and governments, and millions of euros in fraudulent banking and advertising scams.

Ten per cent of home networks and more than 0.5pc of mobile devices were infected with malware in the second quarter, with both figures reflecting increases from the previous quarter, the Kindsight Security Labs Malware Quarterly Report suggests.

Six per cent of home networks revealed high-level threats, such as bots, rootkits and Trojan banking viruses – all types of malware infecting computers, programs and applications.

The ZeroAccess botnet continues to be the most common malware threat, infecting 0.8pc of broadband users’ networks.

In mobile networks, the vast majority of infected devices are either Android phones or Windows laptops tethered to a phone or connected directly through a mobile USB stick or MI-FI hub, according to the report.

Mobile malware continues to grow, with a sixfold increase in the number of Android malware samples.

“Mobile devices are increasingly the targets of malware, yet few of us install an antivirus on these computing platforms,” said Kevin McNamee, security architect and director of Alcatel-Lucent’s Kindsight Security Labs.

Mobile malware image via Shutterstock

Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic