5 ways to avoid top malware threats

Backdoors, cryptomining, fake apps, and banking Trojans increased substantially in the past year, according to McAfee. Here's how to protect your business.

How the malware landscape is evolving We still have a massive number of hacks and malware coming in through phishing and older "tricks," says Franc Artes, Architect of Security Business at Cisco.

In the past year, business professionals saw a 75% increase in banking Trojans, which allow cybercriminals to obtain financial credentials off mobile devices, according to a McAfee report released on Monday.

The report also detected an increase in backdoors, cryptomining, and fake apps through the latter half of 2018. These findings emphasize the importance of securing mobile devices, as well as their connected environments.

SEE: Mobile device security: A guide for business leaders (Tech Pro Research)

"Most businesses, from Fortune 500s to mom-and-pop shops, will likely deal with a security breach or vulnerability disclosure at some point," Steve Povolny, head of advanced threat research at McAfee, said in a press release. "Those who are proactive and very public in addressing the issue have an opportunity to reinforce consumer trust and confidence."

The report identified the following five ways companies can protect themselves from malware threats:

  1. Avoid installing apps from unknown sources: If you receive a text or email with a link instructing you to download something, take pause. Research the app developer, reviews, and download statistics. Look for typos and grammatical errors that could indicate suspicious activity.
  2. Click with caution: Be careful with messages in general. If you receive message from an unknown sender, be cautious interacting with it.
  3. Go directly to the source: Only download software from a company's direct home page. Many comment sections are home to faulty links that criminals make money from.
  4. Use mobile security software: Smartphones carry as much data as computers nowadays. Companies should advantage of mobile security software to protect users from online threats.
  5. Stay aware: New mobile threats surface constantly. Companies must remind employees to stay vigilant for warning signs of malicious activity.

To learn more about the ever-evolving malware landscape, check out this TechRepublic article.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • Mobile malware increased substantially in 2018, especially through banking Trojans. — McAfee, 2019
  • Employees should avoid installing applications from unknown sources, click with caution, go directly to the source, use mobile security software, and stay aware of threats. — McAfee, 2019

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