Android-powered smartphones and tablets have experienced a massive boom in popularity, thanks in no small part to the powerful features included within the open-source operating system. Unfortunately, the open-source nature of the operating system makes it much more vulnerable to hacking attempts and viruses from malicious developers. It would appear that hacking and viruses targeted at the Android are certainly on the rise, meaning savvy users need to make certain to keep themselves protected. A viral attack could cause a wide range of different issues that could cost the user financially or jeopardize the security of their device.
One of the problematic issues behind the virus situation for Android devices is that Google does not screen the applications that are added to its market. This means nefarious developers have the chance to market their wares to unsuspecting consumers who have no idea that the application holds something dangerous within it. This is in stark contrast to the “App Store” from Apple, which carefully screens all of the applications that would like to make themselves available through the software program.
Perhaps one of the most common issues is that smartphone users get nervous about the potential for viruses and hackers to attack their phone, and in turn hit the Android Market in search of an antivirus solution that could help protect their machine. What most users do not realize is that the vast majority of applications claiming to be antivirus solutions are actually developed by nefarious companies who only attempt to get money from the user and perform no real service of any value.
How to Protect Your Android Phone
While it can feel frustrating to realize that your phone could potentially have issues if a hacker were to target it, there are fortunately several different steps you can take to safeguard your phone and keep your data protected. One of the best ways to prevent sensitive information from being stolen is to refrain from using the device to store confidential or private information. This may prove valuable for some smartphone users, but most of those who rely upon their phones routinely open documents and emails on the device. If this is the case, you may need to consider other security tactics.
When possible, apps should only be downloaded from the official market and should carry some mark of approval from other users or a trusted company. Apps developed by larger brands are generally safe options, though it is always beneficial to search out information about any apps you may consider for purchase. You should also pay attention to the permissions the app requests after download. Be wary of apps that ask for contacts information or request permission to use your messaging app. These could potentially be malware apps developed by hackers.
In addition to carefully monitoring what apps are allowed to be installed on the device, it is always useful to keep your Android updated with the latest version of your operating system. When vulnerabilities are discovered within the system, patches are often released to address those problems quickly. If you miss the patch, your device you be left open to a hacker’s whim.
Fortunately for smartphone users, viruses are not nearly as prolific on smartphones as they are on the desktop computer system. Nevertheless, it pays for consumers to pay close attention and to remain vigilant whenever using their Internet-connected devices. Doing so can have great benefits, primarily by allowing you to guarantee that your cellular device never becomes infected with an app that could cause you financial or emotional harm.