A new study shows that in the last year alone the total number of malicious apps has grown an astounding 614% to 276,259 and 92% of malicious mobile software is targeted at the Android platform.
The latest data released on Wednesday by Juniper Networks reveals that Android malware has grown at a “staggering rate” over the last three years. In 2010, it accounted for just 24 percent of all mobile malware, while as of this March the platform accounts for nearly all of it.
More than 500 third-party Android application stores worldwide are known to host mobile malware.
Of the malicious apps tracked by Juniper, three out of five came from either China or Russia.
Juniper estimates that 77% of the current Android malware threats could be eliminated if users were running the latest version of the Android platform. Currently only 4% of Android devices have the latest version of the operating system installed.
“With mobile malware on the rise and attackers becoming increasingly clever, we need better protection for mobile users and corporations,” said Michael Callahan, vice president of global product marketing at Juniper Networks. “While on one hand the OEMs, carriers and software vendors must collaborate to develop platforms that mitigate large threats, enterprises and government organizations need to take a comprehensive look at protecting their data and networks by adopting a holistic approach to mobile security.”