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Android malware is targeting your finances

If you do happen to be unfortunate enough to be one of the mobile users who has their Android phone hit by malware, then there's a good chance the perpetrators of said infection will be aiming to exploit your finances.

According to a new report from G Data, over half of all Android malware has a direct financial motivation – a worrying statistic indeed.

The latest Mobile Malware Report which looked at the first quarter of this year saw G Data's analysts discover no less than 440,000 strains of Android malware.

The rise in fiscally targeted malware unsurprisingly coincides with the increased usage of mobile banking and online shopping on smartphones or tablets.

Some of the malware targets online banking and procedures such as money transfers, whereas other variants force calls to premium numbers, or extort the user (ransomware). Whatever the flavour, you can guarantee one thing, and that's the fact that you'll be out of pocket.

Christian Geschkat, G Data Mobile Solutions Product Manager, commented: "The use of smartphones and tablets for online banking is increasing rapidly. With its dominant market position, the Android operating system in particular is coming to the attention of cyber criminals.

“Hence it is no surprise that attackers are developing and distributing financial malware such as banking Trojans especially for this platform. As such we are expecting a significant increase in financially motivated malware for the Android operating system this year."

G Data further predicts that mobile devices will become a target of attackers attempting to use them as a gateway to Internet of Things gadgets, such as those tied into smart homes and smart cars.

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.