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By 5 March 2012 | Categories: news

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According to Kaspersky Lab, the growth of the use of multiple devices has only increased the need for users to take cognisance of having multiple platform security.

The company explained that according to its research*, conducted towards the end of last year, 13.9% of South African households were found to own tablet devices, while a two thirds majority (66.3%) of local users apparently also own a smartphone.
 
The  research further revealed that 74.2% of local tablet users indicated that they also used a desktop PC, notebook and smartphone – in essence, multiple devices - all of which accessed the internet.

Alexander Erofeev, head of strategic marketing and brand communication at Kaspersky Lab, elaborated that the growth in the usage of smartphones, tablets and notebooks are naturally bring pursued by users for the abundance of opportunities they offer, especially for those constantly on the move.

Erofeev continued that multiple devices are used every day to access the internet and with this comes the possibility of being exposed to potential security threats, malware and viruses. However, according to Kaspesky, protecting one's PC only is no longer enough, and the use of multiple devices has necessitated the use of a multiple security platform.

Growing problem
 
As an indicator of how quickly mobile threats are growing, he related that the first Trojan for the Android platform was discovered eighteen months ago, masquerading as a media player app.
 
“In less than a year, Android malware quickly exploded and became the most popular mobile malware category out there. This trend then became obvious in Q3 of 2011, in which Kaspersky Lab discovered over 40% of all the mobile malware they saw in 2011.
 
“Finally, critical mass was hit in November 2011 when they uncovered over 1000 malicious samples for Android, which is almost as many as all the mobile malware the company has discovered in the past six years!” he added.
 
Spreading woe
 
According to Kaspersky, making matters worse is the fact that many devices can now synchronise with one another, which means viruses could cross pollinate from one connected gadget to another, and affect all devices – resulting in “serious security risks.”
 
“The reality today is that reliable protection is needed for all  internet-enabled devices, as the data stored across these devices needs to be protected. Security can no longer be seen as only a multi-layered approach, but also needs to be seen as a multi-platform one – ensuring that all aspects, and of course, all devices, are secure,” added Erofeev.
 
No one immune
 
Additionally, he addressed the belief that only Windows systems need to be protected. He added that while it may be true that there is less malware for various alternative platforms, real threats that are entirely unrelated to the given operating system are still very much an issue. 
 
“Cybercriminals are out to make big money no matter the platform or device being used. The lowest common denominator of all these devices is internet access,” he stressed.
 
To the point
 
“The diversity of traditional hardware and smart mobile devices is fast leading the industry to the realisation of the need for multi-platform security and device users need to pay attention to the universal security required for these devices, whether in an individual, family or business setting. These devices need to be protected today to ensure the safety and protection of personal information and data for tomorrow,” concluded Erofeev.

In recent news, Kaspersky announced the availability of its Parental Control beta application for Android based smartphones and tablets.

*This survey was conducted by an independent research company “O+K” for Kaspersky Lab, among internet users in 20 countries all over the world in several waves during the year 2011. In the last wave, conducted in October 2011, 7000 users participated. In South Africa, 273 users participated. 

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