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Is Smartphone Safe for Shopping This Holiday?

Mobile payments are taking off this holiday season that shoppers are more likely to shop using their Smartphone for making payments, whether at shopping malls or during online shopping. Many stores at malls are accepting mobile payments. Major mobile carriers have their own proprietary mobile payment apps including AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon. Some stores have adopted mobile retail payment using their own mobile payment apps that are Starbucks and Teavana which uses its own as well as Square Wallet app, CVS accepts variety of mobile payments via NFC and Apple carries out payments through a process called EasyPay which occurs through Apple Store App. But, are these devices safe enough to use for transactions for shopping? What are the most potential threats mobile phones are vulnerable to this holiday season?

What are the threats of mobile payments?

Smartphone users are using their devices for online shopping transactions starting from Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. With mobile phones being used for online transactions at an increasing rate, which is nearly one in four transactions, mobile devices are also exposed to increasing rate of security threats. Both online transactions, whether banking or e-commerce, do not process through robust security and fraud protection measures as much our online transactions occur through desktop computers. Here we have explained some reasons why our mobile transactions are unsafe this holiday season.

Mobile browsers

Mobile browsers do not offer the same accuracy of information as do desktop versions of those browsers. Thus, those mobile browser versions cannot provide the same security measures to the extent that even some browsers reveal information on users while their Wi-Fi or GPS is turned on. That’s how cybercriminals find it easy to locate users and can also hide their own locations.

User experience over security

Most of the app developers and designers prioritize on user experience over security to deliver more convenience. For example, some banking or other apps allow users to save their username, password or other login credentials and even allow storing their credit card number, CVV details and many more within the app to aid in online transactions. Thus, app developers make it easy for hackers to trace account information.

Apart from these reasons, many companies apply alternate back-end processes to make their apps and sites mobile-optimized. For the sake of mobile optimization, some companies do not pay much attention to security measures and leave their apps susceptible to online frauds. Hence, you should be aware of all these potential risks while doing online transactions during holidays.   

Online banking Malware Infection is the Highest This holiday Season

Watch out! Holiday season is around the corner and so is the rate of online banking malware infection. Malware program writers are focused on tapping the surge of online shopping and banking activities to steal online banking credentials in this third quarter of 2013. According to a survey published by renowned antivirus manufacturer, Trend Micro, online banking malware infection is expected to rise to the apex since 2002.

Trend Micro report on online banking malware infection

The Trend Micro security vendor has claimed that they have discovered more than 200,000 new online banking malware infections within the span of July through September. The security vendor has added that this increased rate of malware infection incidence has been the highest ever in 11 years. In previous quarter of April to June, the count of malware infection has been 146,000. But not all online banking users are prone to this highest surge of malware infection. According to the security vendor, the infection is not evenly distributed throughout the world. European online banking users are exposed to lesser degree of online banking malware threat whereas users across the United States are what these malware authors are targeting at. Hence, the report clearly indicates that online banking malware authors and other cybercriminals have narrowed down upon US based banking customers.

Malware software targets Americans

Specifically the most affected users are of US origin; with Americans are reported to be vulnerable to 23 percent of new banking malware infection; while Brazilian users are prone to 16 percent malware infection and Japanese are at 12 percent. Other countries which are discovered to be affected include Mexico, India, Australia, Vietnam, France, Germany, and Taiwan, according to Trend Micro report.

So, is your computer secure enough to protect data and your online banking credentials? Equip your computer today by downloading TechGenie Free Antivirus for safe online holiday shopping.




Call Now: +1 833-522-1003
Call Now: +1 833-522-1003
Call Now: +1 833-522-1003