Hackers Have Attacked 92% of Apple iOS and 100% of Android Top 100 Paid Apps

Author: Cirina Catania
Published: August 22, 2012 at 11:32 am

Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the app store, internet security company, Arxan reports that, "hacked mobile apps now account for the greatest security and financial threat to the overall global software market."

In fact, according to their recent research report, 92% of the top 100 paid apps for Apple iOS and a whopping 100% of the top 100 paid Android apps have been hacked.

On the free app side, hackers have allegedly invaded 40% of Apple iOS apps and 80% of those carried on the Android platform.

Arxan claims that in the 200 apps in their samples, "Hacked versions were found across all key industries such as games, business, productivity, financial services, social networking, entertainment, communication and health."

The report explains that modifications to the apps include disabling or circumventing security, unlocking or modifying features, distributing pirated (free) copies, taking off the ads, stealing the source code and IP information and infesting the app with malicious malware that can invade the users system.

Arxan claims that industry analysts reported $16 billion in global revenue for 2011, with mobile app revenues projected to over $60 billion by 2016. Revenue from mobile app spending might surpass $1 trillion by 2016 if tech futurists are accurate.

Hacked versions might seem compelling to consumers, especially when they don't carry advertising or are touted as having additional features, but those versions can cause serious problems for the user and the businesses who have provided it to the user. My Mom always said, "you get what you pay for." In this case, if you don't pay for it, you get something else entirely, namely a huge set of problems that can pollute your technical foundation.

According to Arxan, "most app owners have not yet taken adequate measures to protect their apps against these attacks," and in fact, they continue, "less than 5% of popular apps contain professional-grade protections to defend against hacking attacks."

For further information and details about the anatomy of a hack, download the report from Arxan.


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Article Author: Cirina Catania

Cirina Catania is a writer, director, journalist and former marketing executive with a long history of success in both the major studio and independent film environment. She is one of the co-founders and former director of the Sundance Film Festival. …

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