Linked by Howard Fosdick on Mon 21st Nov 2011 07:28 UTC
Bugs & Viruses "What happens when anyone can develop and publish an application to the Android Market? A 472% increase in Android malware samples since July 2011." A study by The Global Threat Center over at Juniper Networks details mobile attacks that are increasing both in numbers and sophistication. This contrasts to the iPhone, more secure in part due to Apple's proprietary hold over the platform through its review process.
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Stick to the Android Market - as 99% of users do - and there is no virus problem. It's just your typical FUD.

I would argue that even this sort of rigidity isn't necessary. Even on my Windows partitions, I cannot remember the last time I encountered a virus on my machine; it's been many, many years. And it's not like all the applications installed came from a closed, heavily-regulated distribution channel.

The key is I don't install software from sources I don't trust. I don't go installing cracked commercial software from warez sites (surely a person who distributes cracked software wouldn't possibly pull anything shady). I don't go installing some random software from I don't go blindly installing some software my friend who purports to be "computer savvy" tells me I have to try without doing a little research, and I sure as hell don't let ANYONE go installing stuff on my machines.

If I install GIMP, Ardour, LibreOffice, etc., I don't go grabbing a binary from some strange corner of the Internet. I get it from the repo of a well-established software distribution, or I go directly to the source itself.

It's all about common sense. Even if an app store claims to have thorough, strict review policies, take a long, hard look at what you're about to install. Does it have plenty of history behind it? How many people are using it, and what are their experiences? Who makes it: do you know them? What does the app say it needs access to; can you figure out a good justification they might have for needing those permissions? These questions might not save you every time, but it will definitely reduce the risk by an enormous factor.

Critical thinking: it's the bee's knees.

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