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Buyer beware: 89% of consumers do not pay for any protection against mobile malware putting all at risk

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Nearly 90% of consumers currently do not pay for mobile security services but would be willing to to protect their devices as they do increasing levels of m-commerce, a study has found.

The survey – Allot MobileTrends H1/2017 Report: Consumer View on Mobile Security – carried out by Allot Communications Ltd ahead of next week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, also reveals that mobile consumers in every region, representing 61% overall, want and are willing to pay for protection services from their service provider.

Rather than independently seek out, evaluate and download security apps for each of their mobile devices, consumers would like a one-stop-shop for online protection for themselves and their families. This presents Communication Service Providers (CSPs) with a huge opportunity to be the provider of personal mobile security services from their network.

The study also reveals that of the 68% of mobile Internet consumers that say they are aware of malware, 1 in 7 have experienced a malware attack in the past 12 months. A quarter of consumers contact the CSP when facing a malware incident. The same percentage of consumers contact the app developer and most consumers (35%) contact no one.

“CSPs have a huge opportunity to be proactive and deliver relevant protection,” said Yaniv Sulkes, AVP Marketing at Allot Communications. “Our survey has revealed consumers are demanding simplified protection for their various connected devices and are willing to pay for it. CSPs are best placed to address this industry-wide issue and improve the customer experience.”

Security is a growing issue for all mobile users and personal mobile devices have been identified as a point of weakness for retailers. According to G-J Schenk, VP International at Lookout – writer of our Guest Opinion this week – “One of the easiest routes into a business is through an employee’s mobile device. Today, mobiles have more access rights and knowledge about us than your standard PC, yet they usually have none of the protection or antivirus technology that comes as standard on desktops or laptops. Hackers are aware that these handheld devices are an easy target and will exploit it if they wish.”

More help is at hand from the Mobile Ecosystem Forum. It has launched the Enterprise Mobile Messaging Guide to tackle such bad practices head-on in a proactive move by industry to better support buyers of messaging. Developed by MEF’s 30+ strong group of Future of Messaging Programme participants which includes global messaging suppliers, mobile operators, signalling equipment providers and others in the enterprise messaging ecosystem the guide lifts the lid on the complexities of the market, providing the tools and know-how to help companies procure messaging from legitimate players and avoid fraudulent activity that risks eroding customer confidence or impacting service quality.

Significantly, it maps the six routes authorised for the delivery of enterprise mobile messaging and identifies the essential five features of enterprise messaging solutions: legality & compliance, brand protection, deliverability, performance, price.

Joanne Lacey, COO at MEF explains: “Enterprise mobile messaging is a proven, reliable and robust channel for mass communication be that for authentication, customer engagement or product delivery. However, its complex ecosystem means it is also at risk of fraud.

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