The security industry has been warning users about the threat of viruses on cell phones for years. Yet, despite all the warnings, a dangerous and widespread problem hasn't materialized. What concrete evidence is there that cell phones are going to be the next big target?
Cell phones are becoming the new PCs. Enterprise users are now able to use their mobile phones for the exact same functionality that they previously needed to rely upon with their laptop or desktop PC. Only now, these tasks can be done from a much smaller device from virtually anywhere at any time. This is also true for regular consumers, who utilize their phones for banking transactions, online purchases, etc. It is certainly advantageous for hackers to take advantage of devices that are used for these purposes. Throw in the fact that these devices are multiplying at an incredible rate, usually do not have any security whatsoever and are now including Wi-Fi functionality and it is very easy to see how these devices are becoming the next big target.
The malware landscape has changed significantly in the past few years with authors becoming more professional and writing malicious code for profit. What can they gain from infecting cell phones?
An important concept to understand is that malware is simply software applications that are written for malicious purposes. The limitation of what malware can actually do is only limited by the creativity and knowledge of the developer writing the code and the technical functionality of the operating systems and applications for which the malicious application is being written. With PC-related malware, one of the biggest limitations actually has to do with getting the malware on the device and getting it on their undetected by the existing security applications, not whether something is actually possible or not.
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