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App Security Risk – Android vs. Apple?

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App Security Risk – Android vs. Apple?

Choosing between Android and Apple remains a dilemma for customers world-wide. Some say that there is no substantial difference while others beg to differ. There are many determinants of whether one is better than the other such as specifications, user interface, compatibility, and most importantly security.

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Lack of mobile security can cause a number of issues such as the hacking of private information. Spammers are always on the prowl for new and active email addresses to spam as well as phish out the information that we post to our personal accounts in various mobile applications. Potential security risk lies within the apps that we install on our phones. They can be poorly coded which can cause it to store information in an insecure manner. Your username and passwords can be uploaded insecurely to the servers in plain text which can cause literally any hacker to use it against you. Coding within the app could also be designed to lift off personal information which can make you an easy target for third party advertising. Most applications claim that the data shared on it is held competently and discreetly, but there is no absolute guarantee even if the app has been efficiently coded.

All of the above-mentioned issues can be found in Apple as well as iOS, but to what degree? As an operating system, most people consider Apple to be more sophisticated, organized, and coherent while Android’s market has been fragmented beyond repair. Before being uploaded to the App store, all apps are thoroughly vetted so that no malware is transferred. This process considerably lowers the degree of malware that could transfer from iOS but doesn’t fully eradicate it whereas in Android the number of organizations and developers has really increased giving you tons of variety in apps but with a greater risk. So if this were a gate security competition, Apple would definitely win.

Updates for operating systems are very crucial as they contribute towards fixing a range of issues out of app security and malware protection is probably two of the most important ones. They are essential for a healthy and overall improved system. It is clear that Apple gives out more updates than Android which sheds light on the operating systems check and balance process and the reliability of their security systems.

As a platform on the whole Android is generally targeted more by cybercriminals compared to iOS. However, the XCodeGhost, an iOS based malware has been on the rise. So one cannot really provide an absolute answer on which can be considered the better operating system.

Picture2In terms of structure both the OS are very different and Google dominates the smartphone market with at least 75% share among the users which automatically makes it more vulnerable than Apple. The number of spammers and hackers positively correlates to the number of downloads executed from the store. According to Boy Genius Report, 85% of the operating system issues belonged to Android while only 15% were of iOS in 2015.

Considering flexibility, device makers like HTC and Samsung freely change the Operating System according to the needs of their devices. This is something that you will not find in Apple which makes it more limited compared to Android, but yet again it also makes Apple more secure.

Including mobile carriers such as AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and AirG for app security can really help increase the privacy and security of their customers. Operating systems can really benefit from this strategy considering the number of problems caused by it. A lot of the reviews and customer forums on this topic highlight that it really is a good decision to make and decreases the number of complaints that the customers have relating to app security and privacy.

Security expert, Graham Cluley outlines “Yes, Apple is doing a better job than Google at vetting apps for malicious code before they are allowed into their official app store, and it appears that iPhone and iPad users are much more likely to be running an up-to-date version of their operating system than their often abandoned Android-loving cousins. And there’s no argument that there is a thriving culture of undesirable Android adware and malware that simply doesn’t exist in large numbers for iOS,”

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According to the procedures followed it is highlighted that both – App Store and Google Play go through the regular security checks before they launch apps in the app store. However, Apple still has an advantage over Android when it comes to safe downloading for customers because it is known to have a tight control over this entire system that includes the hardware, apps as well as accessories. It is easier to be dealt with because one company owns and manages the entire system unlike that of Android. Although, the security has improved greatly in the recent years, the openness of its ecosystem will always remain a threat even though it brings in variety.

Overall, the statistics and arguments in terms of structure, update, flexibility and ecosystem processes, Apple wins this round over Android as being less inclined towards security risks.

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