Mobile phones, long seen as safe amid rising threats to computer security, have become a key target for hackers and an increasing worry for corporate IT departments.
While the first mobile virus dates back to June 2004, risks from hackers remained limited because of the relatively small size of the market.
But this has changed recently with the surge in the smartphone segment, which this year outgrew the PC market, and the new dominance of Google’s Android software.
The emergence of mobile payments, which allows shoppers simply to swipe their phones at a cash register, is whetting the interest of hackers and data thieves.
“Mobile security has become a major concern since smartphone transactions are now of much higher value, including corporate data access, managing personal finances and online purchases,” said Steven Nathasingh, chief of US research firm Vaxa Inc.
Most consumers have not protected their smartphones. Fewer than five percent of smartphones and tablets are installed with security software, according to Juniper Research.
The research firm expects to see a surge in demand with the total annual market for mobile security software growing to US$3.6 billion (NT$106.6 billion) by 2016.
1. outgrow v.
超越 (chao1 yue4)
例: Our family has outgrown our house.
2. whet v.
激起 (ji1 qi3)
例: The episode has whetted their interest.
3. transaction n.
交易 (jiao1 yi4)
例: This card enables you to perform all ATM transactions.