India has witnessed over 845 per cent increase in mobile attacks since October 2020 with people continuing working from home due to COVID-19 pandemic. The latest 2021 Mobile Security report by Check Point asserts that there were around 1,345 mobile attacks in October 2020, which jumped to 12,719 attacks in March 2021.
“The move to mass remote working during the COVID-19 pandemic saw the mobile attack surface expand dramatically, resulting in 97% of organisations facing mobile threats from several attack vectors. With 60 per cent of workers forecast to be mobile by 2024, mobile security needs to be a priority for all organisations,” the report said.
The report claims “almost every organisation experienced at least one mobile malware attack in 2020” and 93 per cent of these attacks originated in a device network, which tricked a user into installing a malicious payload via infected websites or URLs, or to steal users’ credentials.
To be specific, around 46 per cent of organisations had at least one employee download a malicious mobile app that threatened their company’s networks and data in 2020. The report notes that 40 per cent of the world’s mobile devices are “inherently vulnerable to cyberattacks due to flaws in their chipsets, and need urgent patching.”
In 2020, around 15 per cent increase was also witnessed in banking Trojan activity, where users’ mobile banking credentials are at risk of being stolen. Potential threat actors have been spreading mobile malware, including Mobile Remote Access Trojans (MRATs), banking trojans, and premium diallers, often hiding the malware in apps that claim to offer COVID-19 related information, as per the report.
“As we have seen in 2020, the mobile threat landscape has continued to expand with almost every organisation now having experienced an attack,” Neatsun Ziv, VP Threat Prevention at Check Point Software said.
He also said that there are more complex threats on the horizon as cybercriminals are continuing to evolve and adapt their techniques to exploit the growing reliance on mobiles. “Users should be careful to use only apps from official app stores to minimise their risk,” he added.
Check Point’s 2021 Mobile Security Report is based on data that was collected from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020, from 1,800 organisations.