Cyber security firm FireEye has announced a new cloud based antivirus platform for Android devices. Branded Mobile Threat Prevention, it is set to be available by the end of this year.
The threat protection works by running apps in a virtual machine based system which provides an automated mobile threat assessment to the user. This means the platform does not have to rely on malware signatures which are increasingly ineffective against evolving modern day mobile attacks.
The sheer size and popularity of Android has meant the growth of threats targeted at users of the OS has grown fast - over 1 million Android apps are currently available, these have been downloaded more than 50 billion times on 1 billion plus devices.
A recent internal US government memo revealed that 79 per cent of threats to mobile operating systems identified by agencies last year were on Android.
Many attacks to Android are dispensed through malicious apps and FireEye recently identified a growing class of mobile threats which affect Android apps with more than 200 million downloads.
The new FireEye platform is designed to minimise these risks by providing a concise assessment of an app's behaviour, including hidden malicious and unwanted functionality.
It also includes an on-demand threat assessments for both custom apps and apps available in public or enterprise app stores, as well as a database containing detailed app behaviours for more than 1 million apps.
"Today's cyber criminals are using all the resources at their disposal to compromise an organisation and steal intellectual property," said Dawn Song, FireEye fellow and associate professor of computer science at UC Berkeley.
"These blended attacks encompass various vectors: email, Web, file, and increasingly the mobile vector. Traditional security defences fail when advanced malware gets increasingly complicated and dynamic. FireEye Mobile Threat Prevention has a unique approach to address these problems."