The slippery slope of increased app usage during the holiday season


December 15, 2023

Promo Protect all your devices, without slowing them down.
Free 30-day trial
The slippery slope of increased app usage during the holiday season

Online activity ramps up during the winter holidays, and in terms of cybersecurity, it can only mean one thing: increased risks that can put an end to your celebrations or travel plans.

One of these risks stems from changes in user behaviors, specifically more engagement with mobile devices and new apps, including:

  • Cashback/coupon, shopping, retailer or travel apps to save money while shopping on the go
  • Food delivery apps for convenience and discounts
  • Dating and social media apps for socialization
  • Gaming apps for those with considerably more time on their hands who can enjoy fun times with family and friends

It’s just a new app on my phone. What could go wrong?

Installing apps via unknown sources, links in YouTube videos or even from official stores can contain malware or harbor other malicious intents, damaging your device or stealing sensitive data from your mobile device. This may include:

· Adware: unwanted software that, once deployed on a device, begins to display unwanted ads and pop-ups, tracking your online behavior/secretly gathering personal data, infringing on your privacy and damaging your online experience

· Spyware and credential-stealing Trojans: malicious software that can monitor the activity on your mobile devices and steal sensitive information, credit card data and credentials

· Scam apps: can pose as official applications to trick you into giving out your credentials, financial info or other sensitive data

· Ransomware: Fake apps disguised as mobile ransomware that can steal sensitive data, lock your device, and keep your information hostage until you pay a large sum

3 easy steps to help you protect against malicious apps hiding in plain sight

  • Only install apps from official app stores after checking reviews and conducting research online. If you find apps on other third-party app stores on online platforms, try looking for alternatives on official stores instead.
  • Check the permissions of the app before installing it on your device. Apps that require too much access to your device’s features and contents can compromise your security. If the app only needs specific permissions to function but it asks for access to sensitive data, it could be spyware in disguise.
  • Use a security solution to scan apps before installing. Scanning new apps/ installation files before launching them to catch spyware and other malicious software from harming you or your device

Better safe than sorry

It’s always better to stay away from third-party app stores and web pages when looking for an application. You don’t want any nefarious software lurking on your device. However, there might be situations where you might have to go for untrusted sources to install your apps, for instance, when the app is in the beta-testing phase. It would be best to take a few precautions to avoid danger in such cases.

PROTECT YOUR IMPORTANT: Keep your mobile device, identity and precious memories safe with Bitdefender

Cybercriminals are always stepping up their game. Shouldn’t you?

Bitdefender Mobile Security gives you an easy and smart way to fend off mobile-based threats that can ruin your Christmas. Besides multiple security and privacy perks, you also benefit from an industry first: App Anomaly Detection technology. The feature adds a much-needed extra layer of security to protect you from malicious apps hiding on your device that have yet to exhibit malicious behavior.

It’s a real-time, behavior-based layer of protection added to Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android that immediately detects malicious apps that attempt to evade regular detection by exhibiting latent malicious behavior.

Without Bitdefender Mobile Security With Bitdefender Mobile Security
You risk your identity and money by downloading apps that may have embedded but dormant malicious features You get protection against suspicious apps that may exhibit latent malicious behavior through App Anomaly Detection
You don’t know whether a link you receive via messages/notifications on your Android device is a phishing attempt or a scam You receive instant notifications whenever you receive a malicious link or in messaging apps or notifications system displays on your Android device with Scam Alert
You’re unaware if the apps on your mobile device are malicious Immediately scan your Android phone or tablet to make sure all your apps are safe with On-Demand and On-Install scan features
You risk falling victim to scammers and phishing websites Enhanced web protection against fraudulent web pages you may unwittingly access when browsing

Try Bitdefender Mobile Security to keep you and your money safe this holiday season!




Alina is a history buff passionate about cybersecurity and anything sci-fi, advocating Bitdefender technologies and solutions. She spends most of her time between her two feline friends and traveling.

View all posts

You might also like