Monitoring Malicious Apps in the App Store for IOS and Android

Media Division | March 16, 2017

Being realistic, virtually any cyber technology can potentially be vulnerable to malware and other exploits.  One of the most popular forms of technology in our modern age is various types of mobile devices, primarily being cell phones and tablets.  These devices can be used to download applications or apps, which could be games, messengers, social media, etc.  But with the massive amount of apps that are continuously launched and downloaded these days comes the concern of them carrying malware, as this has been the case with some of them in the past.

How a Mobile Device Could Become Infected

The two leading mobile operating systems are Android and Apple’s IOS.  Both of these have their own respective app sources, the App Store for IOS and Google Play for Android, which are marketplaces for people to be able to purchase and download these apps. Now, typically both of these developer’s app stores tend to be quite safe when to comes to malware.  They used to be much less safe, but when applications containing malware were able to be slipped through, the security solutions became much more strictly regulated.

Both the App Store and Google Play have comprehensive filters that are able to scan for malware within applications that are submitted for approval.  And not only are these apps automatically scanned, but they are then subjected to human review to ensure that there is no malware or other threats contained within them.

Getting malware on a phone is much more unlikely in comparison to a computer, but it is still possible.  Even with the strict filters and human review, this does not mean that a malicious app will not potentially be able to slip by into one of these stores at some point.  But typically, it is considered quite safe to obtain an app from one of these stores.  More concern lies with apps that are downloaded from sources other than the official stores or pirated versions of apps.  These can easily contain malware being that they have not undergone any method of review.  A large majority of Android malware comes from these third party or pirated apps.  There is also the factor of those with rooted and jailbroken devices, as these can have much higher risk of malware infection than a normally functioning device.

Preventing Malware Infection

Malware can be a very concerning threat, but there are several things a person can do to protect their devices from becoming infected, such as:

  • Only download apps from the official marketplaces
  • Do not download apps that have only been on the store for a few hours, or have very little reviews, unless you trust the developer. While these new apps can be completely harmless, it is better to wait a little while just to ensure that they are not removed or reported soon after due to malicious activity.
  • Look up apps that you are unsure about, as you can find third party reviews to find more information.

Protecting Devices with Cyber Security Monitoring

For a business, cyber security is not something in which they can be lackadaisical.  Deficient or lacking security can potentially be the downfall of an organization.  Cyber security monitoring is one of the most powerful tools that an organization can implement to increase security posture.  It allows IT or an analyst to track and monitor the network in real time, and immediately act in the event of any anomalies or indicators.  This type of defense shortens the reaction time to incidents or alerts, which can prevent or mitigate a potential breach.  Cyber security monitoring from Massive Alliance can allow an organization to increase their ability to prevent and defend against cyber attacks.

Massive's Media Division publishes timely news and insights based on current events, trends, and actionable cross-industry expertise.