PALO ALTO, Calif., Nov. 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Nok Nok Labs, an innovator in modern authentication and a founding member of the FIDO Alliance and Javelin Strategy & Research, today released the findings of a new research report, "Smartphones, Tablets, and Fraud: When Apathy Meets Security." The report, sponsored by Nok Nok Labs, investigates how the rise in mobile device usage for actions that put personal identifiable information at risk such as financial transactions and shopping, mixed with a general state of apathy by mobile stakeholders around security measures, is creating a perfect storm and an open invitation for fraudsters to take advantage.
With at least 6 in 10 mobile users reusing passwords across multiple accounts, passwords remain a critical roadblock to online account security. They are the first line of defence for many accounts, and with the amount of apps and services that mobile users have available today, security is taking a back seat to convenience and mobile users are reusing the same password over and over, exposing their online account to risk of compromise. Additionally, while mobile technology is improving, consumers are still relying on out-dated or legacy authentication technologies like one-time passwords that have been proven insecure time and time again.
"Unfortunately, consumers tend to favor convenience over security when it comes to using their mobile devices," said Al Pascual, senior analyst, Fraud & Security at Javelin and author of the report. "This fact, compounded with the persistent mobile security threats we face such as malicious Wi-Fi hotspots, mobile malware and physical intrusions, means consumers' PII is in a constant state of potential and fairly easy compromise."
The study includes results from 5,634 adults over age 18 in the United States. To follow are a few key findings:
- Android, iOS, and Windows mobile users are undermining their security by reusing passwords more often than the average consumer. These mobile users are about 25% more likely than all consumers to use the same password to access more than one online account. This motivates criminals to target them and their devices to secure credentials with the expectation that they will facilitate access to a variety of the victim's valuable accounts and services.
- Heavy reliance on one‐time passwords is placing Android users' financial accounts at risk. Forty‐one percent (41%) of Android users take advantage of one‐time passwords (OTPs) with their financial accounts. The prevalence of mobile malware for Android capable of intercepting OTPs sent by text (i.e., Short Message Service or SMS) is contributing to the rate of fraud these users experience.
- Mobile users prefer fingerprint authentication, which bodes well for Apple and Samsung. Fingerprint scanning is preferred by Android, iOS, and Windows mobile users among the prevailing biometric modalities. Recent moves by Apple and Samsung to expand fingerprint‐based authentication is likely to be well‐received and will subsequently bolster the preference for this modality.
- Android and iOS users face a significantly higher rate of fraud than the average consumer, for different reasons. Users in both camps display similarly poor password and security habits, which are contributing to their risk of being victimized. More specifically, it is mobile malware that is spurring the fraud experienced by Android users, while the attractiveness of iOS users' income has placed them in the crosshairs of fraudsters.
"This report highlights a fact that we all know - that mobile users are at critical risk for fraud and identity theft," explained Phillip Dunkelberger, President & CEO, Nok Nok Labs. "We have to shift our focus as an industry and make security as important as convenience, without making the technology difficult for consumers to use. The study shows that consumers are willing to adopt biometric methods of authentication which could play a major role in breaking down these barriers to secure authentication."
A full version of the report can be downloaded HERE.
About Javelin Strategy & Research
Javelin Strategy & Research, a Greenwich Associates LLC company, provides strategic insights into customer transactions, increasing sustainable profits for financial institutions, government, payments companies, merchants and other technology providers. Javelin's independent insights result from a uniquely rigorous three-dimensional research process that assesses customers, providers, and the transactions ecosystem.
About Nok Nok Labs
Nok Nok Labs, Inc., based in Palo Alto, CA, was founded to transform online authentication for modern computing. The company is backed by a team of security industry veterans from PGP, Netscape, Oracle, PayPal and Phoenix that have deep experience in building Internet scale security protocols and products. The company's solutions enable end-to-end trust across the web using authentication methods that are natural to end-users and provide strong proof of identity. For more information, visit www.noknok.com.
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