The security experts at McAfee have published details of a new study that found during the second quarter of 2011, Android-powered devices faced a staggering 76% increase in malware than that of the first quarter — while Apple’s iOS devices remained unaffected by malicious exploits.
In its Second Quarter 2011 Threats Report, relayed by Electronista, McAfee noted that the “threat landscape of 2011 is undergoing a year of chaos and change.” Google’s Android platform, which was once the third-most targeted platform for malware, shot up to first place after 44 cases of malware were discovered.
This increase in threats to such a popular platform should make us evaluate our behavior on mobile devices and the security industry’s preparedness to combat this growth.”
However, it would seem those of us sporting iOS devices have little to worry about. Thanks to Apple’s ‘closed’ ecosystem — which is often criticized by fans of the Android platform — the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch are more secure than Steve’s own office in Cupertino.
Back in June, Symantec issued a report in which it stated that iOS has “full protection” against mobile malware, whereas the Android operating system was described as having “little protection.”
There’s a chance that our iOS devices will be infected in future, however. McAfee noted the Mac Defender malware that recently plagued some Mac OS X users, and said that similar attacks for iOS devices are more a “case of ‘when’ rather than ‘if’.”
In addition to the Android platform, devices running Java ME, Symbian and RIM’s BlackBerry OS were also affected by malware growth, while HP’s webOS platform is seemingly just as safe as iOS.