Light Reading
More data usage can lead to more mobile infections, according to Alcatel-Lucent's latest malware findings.

LTE Brings More Malware

Sarah Reedy
1/29/2014
50%
50%

The fatter the pipes, the higher the usage, and now, it appears, the bigger the potential for malware too.

At least that's what a new study from Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU)'s Kindsight Security Labs has concluded. The security division discovered that mobile malware infections rose 20% last year, with 4G LTE devices most often infected. Of those, Android is still the most vulnerable.

Devices with Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)'s operating system on board accounted for 60% of the infections, typically in the form of trojanized applications downloaded from third-party app stores, Google Play Store, or by phishing scams.

This is the same proportion that Kindsight found when it released its report last quarter. At that time less than 1% -- 0.6% -- of devices had been infected; this quarter it was even smaller at 0.55%, or 11.6 million mostly Android devices, infected with malware. (See Android's Still a Malware Magnet.)

The number isn't high enough for grave concern. As Heavy Reading analyst Patrick Donegan pointed out with last quarter's report, the industry should even be applauded for the 99.4% of devices that aren't infected. (See LTE Brings Myriad Security Concerns.)

It's long been known that LTE is more susceptible to threats than 3G. It's an all IP network, so it adopts the vulnerabilities of both a fixed and mobile network. But, Kindsight says it's also simply because LTE networks are used more than their 3G predecessors. As JDSU (Nasdaq: JDSU; Toronto: JDU)'s study last week pointed out, LTE users tend to download more data and spend more time on the mobile Internet. (See LT-Extreme: 4G Subs Use 10X More Data and Mobile Data Trends in Developing & Developed Markets.)

"On average, an LTE user consumes twice as much data, including 50% more video, than 3G users," says Mark Hudson, director of communications for Alcatel-Lucent's IP platforms group. "Simply put, LTE devices are more likely to get infected simply because they are more actively surfing the Internet."

As a vendor that sells network-based security services, Alcatel-Lucent's conclusion is hardly surprising: Operators need more network-based security services. But whether it comes from them or not, it's certainly true that security has to start in the network. (See Network Security in a 4G LTE World.)

In other news from the department of shameless plugs, Heavy Reading's Donegan will be hosting a breakfast on this very subject, "Creating Trust in the Mobile Network," at Mobile World Congress on February 26. Find out more and register for the breakfast here. (See Coffee, Tea, or Network Security?.)

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
1/29/2014 | 10:31:58 AM
Malware meh?
While I do think there's a much greater need for security at the network level with LTE, I'm not sure how alarming this malware trend is. At less than 1% and shrinking, it's really not that grave. I'd be more concerned about attacks on the network.
More Blogs from Light Reedy
Vodafone's Dr. Alan Law talks to Light Reading about virtualization, backhaul, SON and more after being appointed chairman of the Small Cell Forum.
Wireless operators are jumping on the mobile music bandwagon, a move that sounds good for many reasons.
The worlds of tennis, fashion and wearables collide as Ralph Lauren and OMsignal turn a polo into a sensor to track your every movement.
The fine print on Sprint's new $60 plan suggests it can prioritize other plans' traffic first – a letdown, and maybe even a net neutrality violation.
Verizon is reportedly working with an industry consortium to launch its own app store, but past efforts suggest it's not a smart move for the operator.
Flash Poll
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Network Solutions Help the Philippines Jump Ahead

9|17|14   |   2:59   |   (0) comments


In the past, the Philippines has under-invested in technology. Now, the CEO of Softshell talks about how Huawei products help the Philippines jump ahead as the economy improves.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
VCS Observation for Safer Cities in the Netherlands

9|17|14   |   5:20   |   (0) comments


Holland's VCS Observation has been operating for 22 years. Its main goal is to get cities safer. CEO Wim van Deijzen tells us some of the challenges his company faces and how Huawei is helping to overcome these challenges.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
A Conversation With Serbia's Ministry of Interior

9|17|14   |   4:38   |   (0) comments


At HCC 2014, the Assistant Minister of the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia talks to us about his projects and corporation with Huawei. Solutions like Safe City and E-Government and services like cloud computing are just some of the areas his department is interested in.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
IHS Analyst Discusses eLTE at CCW 2014

9|10|14   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Thomas Lynch, associate director of critical communications at IHS Technology, talks about broadband in critical communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
TCAA on Huawei eLTE: A Broadband Solution for Mission-Critical Communications

9|10|14   |   2:29   |   (0) comments


At CCW2014 in Singapore, the TCCA's Phil Kidner talks about the importance of broadband data for critical communications.
LRTV Custom TV
Spotlight on Cisco: SDN for Optical Networks

9|8|14   |   9:27   |   (0) comments


Cisco's Greg Nehib talks OpenFlow and more on the 'Software-Defined Networking for Optical Networks' panel at the Big Telecom Event in June 2014.
LRTV Custom TV
Cisco's Evolved Programmable Network (EPN)

9|8|14   |   4:05   |   (0) comments


A look at the various demos Cisco showed at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event highlighting Cisco's EPN innovation and how SDN and NFV technologies are enabling a variety of new services.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Future of Ultra-Broadband, With Kevin Kelly (UBBF2014)

9|5|14   |   1:13   |   (0) comments


If you think the technological changes we've seen up to now are astounding, just wait until you see what the future has in store. Discuss upcoming breakthroughs with Kevin Kelly, Founding Executive Editor of Wired Magazine, at the Huawei Ultra-Broadband Forum on September 24.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Inaugural Optical Innovation Forum in Nice

9|2|14   |     |   (0) comments


More than 170 attendees from network operators, service providers, analyst firms, and component companies from around the world convened in Nice in June for the inaugural Optical Innovation Forum, co-produced by Huawei and Light Reading.
Wagner’s Ring
Data Centers Drive Telcos Into the Future

8|28|14   |   2:20   |   (2) comments


Data centers are at the heart of key trends driving telecom -- network virtualization, the drive for increased agility, and the need to compete with OTT providers.
LRTV Custom TV
Why SPs Should Consider Cisco's EPN

8|27|14   |   5:40   |   (0) comments


Sultan Dawood from Cisco discusses Cisco's EPN, which enables SPs to build agile and programmable networks delivering new network virtualized services using Cisco's Evolved Services Platform (ESP).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Showcase @ Big Telecom Event 2014

8|26|14   |   2.56   |   (0) comments


SoftCOM is Huawei's framework for telecom business and network transformation. Haofei Liu, Solution Marketing Manager, Carrier Business Group, Huawei, showcases Huawei's SoftCOM architecture in this video.
Upcoming Live Events!!
September 23, 2014, Denver, CO
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
A survey conducted by Vasona Networks suggests that 72% of mobile users expect good performance all the time, and they'll blame the network operator when it's not up to par.
Today's Cartoon
Vacation Special Caption Competition Click Here
Latest Comment
Hot Topics
Glimpsing the Self-Driving Car
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 9/12/2014
AT&T to Launch WiFi Calling in 2015
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/12/2014
AT&T: We'll Bundle Fixed Wireless & DirecTV
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/15/2014
New NFV Forum Focused on Interoperability
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 9/16/2014
Connecticut Cities Crowdsource Gigabit Nets
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 9/15/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed