SecurityRace

Keeping safe in the face of evolving security threats

Will we ever win the fight against cybercrime? The answer to that is probably no. Mostly because new technology is always just around the corner that will give cybercriminals new opportunities to challenge us in new ways. The greatest example in modern times of this has been how the advent of smartphones has transformed the threat landscape so quickly.

A revolution for smartphone usage

The mainstream use of smartphones presented a revolution for cybercriminals. At first, some security experts thought that apps would not become part of the threat landscape due to the strength of their operating systems. The reality though was very different.

Apple’s operating system has proven to be hardy against the spectre of cybercrime, but jailbroken iPhones have presented significant security challenges which have proven that iOS isn’t infallible. With malware such as XcodeGhost also making waves on Apple devices, iPhones aren’t the safe haven they once were.

Android has now become a prime target for hackers, with Symantec’s 2016 Internet Security Threat Report showing a 77 per cent year-on-year increase in the number of new Android mobile malware variants. To illustrate this growing danger, nasty malware strains such as MazarBOT and Acecard have had success when targeting the potentially lucrative mobile banking market.

Protecting your apps first

Cybersecurity professionals and organisations are doing their best to keep up with the changing threat landscape. However, the speed with which new threats are emerging means that there will always be a degree of uncertainty over data safety, especially if companies are relying on the operating systems and antivirus software of their individual users’ devices to provide these lines of defence.

To guard against future threats, organisations can take charge of their own security by implementing software that directly defends the app and the valuable data it holds. That way, app providers don’t have to concern themselves so heavily with the malware that may have found its way onto a customer’s device.

Recent developments show that mobile threats will continue to proliferate as hackers continue to refine their craft. At the same time, IT professionals should be aware of the fact that cybersecurity is now a multidimensional discipline: by embracing its various facets, including newer developments such as self-defending app software, businesses stand the best chance of keeping pace with the threat landscape.