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

Alexandra GHEORGHE

March 06, 2014

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

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.

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