Mobile Security Incidents Go Up

by CXOtoday Staff    Feb 14, 2007

McAfee, Inc. has announced findings from new research that reveals mobile operators globally are experiencing more mobile malware attacks than ever before, and spending more time and money on recovery from these attacks.

The research found that nearly half of the operators who have experienced mobile malware outbreaks have had one within the last three months. Twice as many mobile operators spent over $200,000 on mobile security in 2006, compared to 2005.

83 percent of mobile operators questioned have been hit by mobile device infections. The number of reported security incidents in 2006 was more than five times as high as in 2005. The number of mobile operators in Europe and APAC reporting incidents affecting more than 1,000 devices more than doubled in 2006

The research indicates that mobile operators are concerned with the impact of mobile security on their business. Almost 80 percent cited impact on public relations or their brand as of high concern, closely followed by the loss of credibility in the reliability of new services - a crucial issue as operators seek to increase average revenue per user (ARPU) and lifetime value in maturing markets.

Despite the fact that most mobile operators are experiencing mobile security incidents and are concerned with its future impact, the research also highlights a large gap between the kind of protection operators consider important and that which they actually deploy.

In line with the growing importance of mobile security to service providers, 85 percent of those questioned plan to increase their mobile security budgets to tackle issues including network intrusion, mobile viruses, denial-of-service attacks, spam and mobile phishing (SMiShing.)

The research was conducted by Informa Telecoms & Media between December 2006 and January 2007. An email invitation to complete the anonymous survey online was targeted at mobile operators worldwide.