SMobile Systems Analysis of Android App Store Reveals Massive Potential for Malware and Viruses

20 Percent of Android-Based Apps Grant a Third-party Application Access to Private or Sensitive Information

Jun 22, 2010, 13:20 ET from SMobile Systems

COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- For the first time since its inception, Android based smartphones outsold iPhones in the first part of 2010.  Consumers who purchase these smartphones are downloading millions of Android-based applications, and, according to a new SMobile Systems analysis of the Android market, putting their personal and professional data at risk.

SMobile System's Global Threat Center ( has performed an in-depth analysis of over 48,000 applications currently available on the Android market and discovered the following threats:

  • 20 percent of applications in the Android market grant a third party application access to private or sensitive information that an attacker could use for malicious purposes, such as Identity Theft, mobile banking fraud and corporate espionage; 5 percent of applications have the ability to place a call to any number, without requiring user intervention;
  • Dozens of applications have the identical type of access to sensitive information as known spyware
  • 2 percent of market submissions can allow an application to send unknown premium SMS messages without user intervention.

"The Android operating system and the Android Market are quickly becoming the most widely used mobile platform and app store in the world.  There are individuals and organizations out there right now, developing malicious code designed to capture your most personal information and use it to their advantage," said Neil Book, Chief Executive Officer of SMobile Systems.

To help protect Android and other smartphones, SMobile has incorporated a new patent-pending spyware detection technology into its Security Shield solution.  This revolutionary capability analyzes an entire device in seconds and immediately identifies and mitigates known and unknown spyware threats, all with virtually no impact to the user experience or device performance. Built from SMobile's extensive history of protecting BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Symbian and Palm devices and originally released for Android at the launch of the first Android-phone, Security Shield was the first commercially available mobile security solution specifically developed to protect devices utilizing the Google Android operating system. To view the complete SMobile Android Market whitepaper, please visit

"The open-source architecture that drives Android phones and the abundance of application stores available for all smartphone devices have allowed developers to quickly create and post thousands upon thousands of new applications.  As a result, applications are currently available that have the potential to cause serious harm to devices, customers and to the broader cellular network," said Daniel V. Hoffman, Chief Technology Officer for SMobile Systems. "SMobile's eight year history of providing industry-leading mobile device security and management solutions, coupled with the robust features included with SMobile Security Shield provide the highest level of security in the market to Android and other smartphone devices, protecting against Malware threats, Identity Theft, and lost and stolen devices.

SMobile's Security Shield for Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Symbian provides complete mobile device protection for consumers and enables Enterprise and SMB customers to manage, protect, audit and report on their entire heterogeneous mobile device population via the SMobile Management Console.

About SMobile

SMobile, Inc. has created the first and only complete line of products and services that securely protect mobile phones and the global wireless infrastructure from hackers, viruses, data compromise, unauthorized data theft and the effects of lost or stolen devices.  The company's security applications include virus and malware detection, text message and data filtering, prevention of unwanted messages from interrupting the user, spam blocking, enterprise management, protection for mobile professionals from harmful data on open networks and data security and password-protection for content and files. SMobile is headquartered in Columbus, OH with facilities in Fort Lee, N.J., Dortmund, Germany, and Pune, India. The company is privately held.

Security Shield is a registered trademark of SMobile, Inc.



Anne Donohoe/Brittany Fraser


SOURCE SMobile Systems