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06 Jul 2016
by David Jannetta
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Malware From Chinese Ad Firm Infects 10 Million Android Devices

Malware From Chinese Ad Firm Infects 10 Million Android Devices

Engadget reported today that Yingmob, a Chinese advertising and analytics company, is responsible for infecting 10 million devices with the Android malware Hummingbad.

The report noted that once it successfully infects devices (giving it full administrative control), Hummingbad generates as much as $300,000 a month through fraudulent app installs and ad clicks.

In addition to its Hummingbad victims, Yingmob controls around 85 million devices globally, allowing the company to sell access to the infected devices, along with selling sensitive information it captures from the devices.

If you are a brand owner concerned about pirated apps stealing your IP and using it for nefarious purposes, especially in the rapidly growing Chinese marketplaces, let us know and we will provide you a free Brand Report. […]

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17 Jun 2016
by Reggie Pierce
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Jack Ma: Fakes “Better Quality and Better Price Than the Real Names”

Jack Ma: Fakes “Better Quality and Better Price Than the Real Names”

The Wall Street Journal reported this week that Alibaba’s Jack Ma almost endorsed pirated goods by commenting that fakes were sometimes better quality than originals.

“The problem is the fake products today are of better quality and better price than the real names,” he said at Alibaba’s investor day in Hangzhou. “They are exactly the same factories, exactly the same raw materials but they do not use the names.”

Of course these comments created a storm of protest from luxury brand owners, who for years have complained about counterfeit goods on Taobao, a popular Chinese website. […]

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10 Jun 2016
by David Jannetta
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Study Shows 42% of People Booked a Hotel Using Smartphone

The Hotels.com™ Mobile Travel Tracker released a study showing the impact mobile devices are having on hotel booking and travel behaviors.

The study “reveals that as mobile usage continues to grow and smartphones keep getting smarter, they’re shaping our travel mind-sets more than ever before, with almost a third of people admitting they book more trips than ever thanks to mobile.”

The study also showed that 42% of individuals have booked a hotel using a smartphone, and that mobile devices are the number one travel accessory.

According to the stats, the five most important factors for people using a mobile app or website to book a hotel are:

  • 54% said the right payment method must be offered
  • 48% looked for genuine guest reviews
  • 48% said the price must offer the best value
  • 46% wanted detailed information
  • 43% wanted to see plenty of hotel photos

The Hotels.com Mobile Travel Tracker is a global study of 9,200 travelers across 31 countries. […]

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12 May 2016
by David Jannetta
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Windows 10 Torrent App Infected With Adware

Windows 10 Torrent App Infected With Adware

ZNET’s Ed Bott installed the current version of Torrenty this week and noticed a curious message right from the startup, which quickly succeeded in downloading adware in a Windows 10 PC.

Winbeta reported that “the app’s endgame was apparently to install a browser add-on that enables a variety of unwanted popups and ads on top of a user’s internet browser.”

Constant monitoring of apps and app stores helps insure malware is not downloaded to your devices. This monitoring is very cost effective and is great insurance for brand owners. Give us a call for a free report on the malicious apps trying to take advantage of your brands. […]

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05 May 2016
by David Jannetta
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App Pirates Plead Guilty

The US Department of Justice announced on Monday that two Android app pirates pled guilty in January for their scheme “to distribute more than four million pirated copies of copyrighted Android apps with a total retail value of more than $17million.”

The DOJ press release went on to detail:

“… the conspirators identified themselves as members of the Applanet Group.  From May 2010 through August 2012, they conspired to reproduce and distribute more than four million copies of copyrighted Android apps through the Applanet alternative online market without permission from the victim copyright owners, who would otherwise sell copies of the apps on legitimate online markets for a fee.  […]

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20 Apr 2016
by David Jannetta
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Google Makes Security Enhancements on Play Store

Google just released its Android Security Annual Report, and Adrian Ludwig, Lead Engineer for Android Security, noted that “one important goal of releasing this report is to drive an informed conversation about Android security.”

The report shows that efforts to install malware within Google Play fell significantly between 2014 and 2015. Last year Google’s efforts to protect against Potentially Harmful Apps (PHAs) reduced the probability of installing a PHA from Google Play by over 40%.

As Apple and Google continue to make strides to clean up their app stores, the dozens of third party stores show no signs of similar aggressive efforts. […]

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23 Mar 2016
by Max Jannetta
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Apple Tops 1 Billion Active Devices

In its first quarter earnings report, Apple announced that it had reached a new milestone: the total number of active Apple devices has surpassed 1 Billion!

The devices include iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple Watches and others. And all are in regular use, communicating with the App Store and iCloud.  This represents an enormous number of apps being downloaded, and we have every reason to expect this growth to continue.

Are you concerned about piracy of your brand in the app stores? If so, give us a call or send us a note for a free Brand Report. […]

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17 Mar 2016
by Peter Gordon
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Apple Promises To Address Spammy Apps

Apple Promises To Address Spammy Apps

 TechCrunch reported this week that Phil Schiller, head of Apple’s App Store, responded via Twitter to complaints that spam apps and rip-offs were appearing in the “New” and “What’s Hot” sections of the App Store.

The report notes:

“The issue has to do with the App Store’s algorithm, which recommends new apps and games to try, based on new releases and what’s trending on the App Store. However, the problem is that instead of picking out great and engaging new titles, the algorithm had been picking up a variety of applications which are copycat versions of the popular “2048” game. […]

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04 Mar 2016
by David Jannetta
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Dangers of Data Collection in Mobile Apps High Says Hewlett Packard

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) just published its Mobile Application Security Report revealing that a large number of mobile applications are collecting alarming quantities of data.

The press release states that “modern mobile applications are collecting, transmitting and storing a wide range of data that often is not necessary to the application’s function, and can cause significant financial and reputational damage if a vulnerability is exploited.”

Some of the top findings from the report include:

  • A majority of mobile applications track your location, but not all of them need to
  • Games and weather applications are collecting calendar data
  • Ad and analytics frameworks put your most sensitive data at risk

The major takeaways for consumers are:

  • Select applications wisely
  • Be wary of applications storing large amounts of data

This report focused on what HPE believed to be legitimate apps, and found this data collection alarming. […]

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19 Feb 2016
by David Jannetta
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Rogue App Stores Growing Threat To Security

In today’s edition of American Banker, Editor@Large Penny Crosman presents an excellent overview of how rogue app stores are threatening mobile banking security.

We wanted to highlight her article and stress that although she focuses on the negative impact these apps present on banking security, every business vertical we work in, from media and music companies to technology and luxury goods companies, all suffer from these same threats.

Crosman begins the article:

So-called rogue app stores, once a fringe element, are becoming a serious concern for banks, as subtly altered versions of popular apps are appearing more often on smartphones. […]

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