“Over five billion downloaded Android apps are vulnerable to being hacked, cybersecurity researchers have found, as attackers exploit flaws in Google’s operating system,” Arjun Kharpal reports for CNBC. “Some 96 percent of malware — or malicious software — employed by hackers target Google Android, according to U.S. firm FireEye, which analysed more than 7 million mobile apps on Android and Apple iOS between January and October 2014.”

“Apps designed to steal financial data were especially popular, the researchers found. The open-source nature of Android allows hackers to find the code behind a popular app, they said, and recreate the app almost identically but with a malicious code to infect users,” Kharpal reports. “Fireye said that one of Android’s biggest vulnerabilities was the way in which its mobile apps communicate information back to servers. It found that much of this communication was unencrypted, leaving it open for hackers to intercept and insert malicious code that can infect end users.”

“It is not only Android apps that are vulnerable, however. Vulnerabilities in apps on iOS devices, once seen as very secure, were also identified,” Kharpal reports. “App developers typically build and test an app in beta mode on Apple’s iOS Developer Enterprise Program. It then goes through stringent tests by Apple for security before it is pushed out on the App Store. But hackers are now creating apps through this program, then sending them to people via text messages or emails as a link. When a user clicks the link, the malicious app is downloaded on their device.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iOS is still seen as very secure. Extremely secure.

F-Secure Android Malware

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Bill” for the heads up.]