As our mobile devices became highly sophisticated tools with regular access to the internet, they also became a security risk. Let’s be clear about it, smartphones are small computers, and they are a huge liability as they use, receive, and send our personal data.
This is something that cybercriminals have recognized and started looking to exploit the vulnerabilities of modern mobile devices. As the number of mobile devices keeps skyrocketing, they have become a frequent target for cybercriminals.
One of the biggest concerns is the rise of malicious software specifically designed to target mobile phones. Both individuals and companies need to make the necessary steps to protect themselves from mobile malware or they will pay a high price.
How mobile malware works
Mobile malware is pretty much the same as computer malware. It is malicious software designed to steal your data, resources, or money. The first way your device can get infected with malware is by downloading something or going through unsecured websites, where you are required to get extensions or something similar.
Another way is through apps. Some apps are infected, to begin with, and when you download them, you also download malware. On the other hand, there are apps that you can get and use normally, but at some point, they get infected by using them improperly and not taking care of your security.
There are many rogue apps online and copies of original apps that are only designed to harm you. One of the ways you can get your app or device infected is also through malvertizing. This is when hackers insert malicious ads in official apps and when you click on those ads, you instantly infect your device.
How to protect your device from malware
- Download apps only from official sources
The first thing you need to do to avoid infecting your device with malware is to pay attention to what apps you are downloading. Always make sure that you are downloading apps from the real developers and official channels. Use your app store and check what app description has to say.
Additionally, those apps that have similar names like the app you are looking for, but aren’t quite the same, are duplicates you need to avoid. In the end, make sure that you never download apps from third-party sites or get the ones that are “completely free.”
- Update your phone regularly
To protect your device, it’s essential to keep it updated. This means always upgrading your operating system. The majority of patches that come in new updates are new security measures that will protect you better.
Additionally, all the apps you already have on your devices should be updated when possible. This will help you protect your app from getting infected. Not only will updates increase the overall security of your device, but they will also make it run smoother, so it’s a win-win situation.
- Install a VPN tool
VPN tools are becoming more and more popular because they allow more privacy online and, more importantly, increase your security. Luckily, there is VPN software both for computers and Android smartphones.
A VPN works as a security tool that creates a tunnel through which you go online with your mobile device. All the information you are sending and receiving is encrypted, and nobody can see what you are doing. This means that you will be off the radar for potential malware and attackers that want to target you based on your behavior.
- Download malware protection
In the end, you need to make sure that you install malware protection software on your mobile device. It is the same as not having antivirus software on your computer – a big mistake. Malware protection will recognize malicious software, pages, and links, preventing you from doing something you would regret.
At the same time, if your device gets infected, this software will inform you of what happened so that you can make the necessary steps as soon as possible before the damage escalates.
Make sure that your app verification tools are always on so that you can check the validity of the apps you are downloading or using. Make sure to use your device properly, especially if it’s an Android because there are a lot of threats out there and they can cost you a lot.