Cyber threats rising in the META region


Kaspersky Office. File photo.

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THREATS for mobile devices are growing in the African continent as users increasingly rely on mobile devices to share personal data and connect to corporate networks.

A similar trend is noted in the Middle East and Turkey.

Collectively, threats in these regions increased by 5 percent in the second quarter (Q2) 2023 compared to Q2 2022.

Threat statistics in the report come from Kaspersky solutions running on Android devices.

This mobile operating system (OS) holds a dominant market share in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey (META). Apple devices are not immune to cyber but are difficult to monitor due to OS specific, Kaspersky noted.

Among the most prevalent mobile threats that were detected are adware and mobile banking threats.

In Q2 there was a significant rise in adware detections in the region compared to Q2 2022. This comprises 94 percent in Nigeria, 49 percent in Turkiye, 27 percent in South Africa, 39 percent in Kenya and 6 percent in the Middle East.

Banking trojans, which are used to hunt for data related to online banking and e-payment systems, are another concerning threat for mobile users.

“With the growing adoption of smartphones and mobile banking in the (META) region, cybercriminals are likely to further increase their targeting of mobile devices,” commented Anton Kivva, Malware Analyst Team Lead at Kaspersky.

Kaspersky has forecast a surge in phishing attacks, mobile malware, and malicious apps disguised as legitimate financial services.

“Cybercriminals will continue to exploit social engineering tactics, such as SMS phishing and voice phishing, to trick mobile users into revealing sensitive information or downloading malicious content,” Kivva warned.

Individuals and organisations in the (META) been advised to prioritise mobile cyber security measures, including robust antivirus software, regular updates, user education, and vigilance against social engineering tactics to safeguard their mobile devices and sensitive data.

– CAJ News









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