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Smartphones must also use antivirus software

07 Sep 2013

Users at risk of security breach if they download material from a malicious site

Dubai: So you have a freshly minted smartphone and have downloaded all the apps you fancy. Unbeknown to many, those innocuous-looking apps could get you in big trouble with your personal data open to compromise.

The reason: Most smartphones, especially Android handhelds, do not bother to install antivirus software to ward off malicious code, experts warn.

The bulk of smartphone users do not have antivirus software due to the mistaken belief that only computers and laptops are vulnerable.


The smartphone market in the UAE is strong with a 73 per cent penetration and most consumers looking to upgrade devices, a TNS Annual Mobile Life Study revealed.

“The problem with smartphones is that people think they are more trustworthy than computers and laptops so people rarely install antivirus software,” said Fadi A. Aloul, associate professor of computer engineering at the American University of Sharjah (AUS) and founder of the AUS Computer Security Lab. “The smartphone is just like a minicomputer — if you download something from a malicious site, you are at risk of a security breach which is why antivirus software is important,” he added.

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