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A Quarter of Smartphone Users Fail to Protect Privacy, Survey Shows

New iOS and OS X Malware Infects Non-Jailbroken Apple Devices

A Quarter of Smartphone Users Fail to Protect Privacy, Survey ShowsDespite the growing number of Android privacy threats, 25.8% of smartphone users don’t protect their smartphones with an anti-malware solution, a new IT Security Survey by independent test labs AV-Comparatives reveals.

The survey also showed that antivirus users are more interested in a security product’s performance than its detection rate. Some 69.1% mainly want an antivirus solution that does not negatively impact system resources, the study shows. Malware detection comes second on the list of priorities (62.4%), followed by cleaning capabilities (60.7%).

Android devices have become increasingly popular, with 70.1% of mobile owners who took the survey choosing an Android OS phone and only 14.9% preferring Apple’s iOS.

Worldwide, 50.9% users pay for security, yet the situation varies by region. Free antivirus programs are mostly popular in Asia (59.6%) and the US (39.0%), while North Europeans opt more frequently for paid security suites (45.5%).

In South/Central America and Asia, users’ programs spot malware more often than those of European users and nearly 50% remains undetected every week.

In terms of operating systems, 57.1% of respondents use Windows 7 while 28.5% adopted Windows 8 and 10.7% still use Windows XP despite Microsoft’s announcement that it will end support for the OS in April 2014.

The research was conducted on some 6,000 AV-Comparatives site visitors between December 2013 and February 2014. Two-fifths of respondents are Europeans, just over a third from Asia, and about 14% from North America.

Bitdefender, which provides a free antivirus app for Android, leads the industry in both detection and minimizing system impact. The company won “Best Protection” and “Best Performance” in January by independent tester AV-TEST and the Gold Award for Proactive Malware Protection by AV-Comparatives.

About the author

Alexandra GHEORGHE

Alexandra started writing about IT at the dawn of the decade - when an iPad was an eye-injury patch, we were minus Google+ and we all had Jobs. She has since wielded her background in PR and marketing communications to translate binary code to colorful stories that have been known to wear out readers' mouse scrolls. Alexandra is also a social media enthusiast who 'likes' only what she likes and LOLs only when she laughs out loud.

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