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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : August 30, 2013

McAfee announces record-breaking number of malware strains

A new report from McAfee Labs reveals the growth in the number of new mobile security threats identified in the second quarter of 2013, the highest rate of growth witnessed by McAfee in the last few years.

by Helen Leggatt

According to McAfee Labs, the rise in new malware of all types is sure to mean a recording breaking year. Just mid-way through 2013, the labs have already collected as many mobile samples as they did in all of 2012.

New types of malware exceeded 18 million in the second quarter of 2013 "pushing our all-time tally to more than 147 million binaries", says the online security firm in its second quarter "Threats Report".

The most popular mobile threats are backdoor Trojans and banking malware, with 17,000 new Android samples found in Q2 2013. Levels of AutoRun threats and signed malware are also showing record levels, and levels of suspicious URLs are up.

"As in other mature areas of cybercrime, the profit motive of hacking bank accounts has eclipsed the technical challenges of bypassing digital trust," said Vincent Weafer, senior vice president, McAfee Labs. "Tactics such as the dating and entertainment app scams benefit from the lack of attention paid to such schemes; while others simply target the mobile paradigm's most popular currency: personal user information."

Meanwhile, most consumers are now comfortable using a mobile device to access financial accounts. Recent research from Mojiva found that almost three-quarters now using banking apps or access a mobile banking website at least once a week, while just over half (56%) usie a credit card app or mobile website at least once a week.

Tags: malware, mobile banking, mobile threat, trojan

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