Published on January 4, 2016 in Industry News

Risky online applicationsMobile devices, whether they be our trusty phones, our tablets, or even smartwatches, have become an intricate part in the average person’s life. For many the devices are a means of conducting business, staying in touch with friends and family and there are those whose entirely livelihood revolves around these small, yet powerful, machines.

Of course mobile devices are also used for pleasure such as watching movies, listening to music and even gambling. While gambling applications are not uncommon, it has been said by the security and data protection service provider, Proofpoint, that there are many risks involved. 

Proofpoint conducted tests on more than 23,000 gambling applications that are available for free. The apps included poker, blackjack, bingo, solitaire, and other card games where personal details such as banking information is required. Proofpoint found that 52 of the apps contained “malicious code”, almost 400 had known security vulnerability risks and 3200 were considered “moderate risks” to consumers. 

A Proofpoint representative stated: “Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting mobile users with free mobile apps in order to steal data. The existence, and surprising prevalence, of risk ware in apps is a valuable reminder of the importance of a mobile app security strategy.”

MacPaw, an independent software development company also based in California said: “These stores offer some pretty strict guidelines on what can be developed and what can’t. There are very few things a developer can sneak by past these stores, and anything questionable would be addressed in number X and X of this list.” Mac Paw also advised that applications only be downloaded from trusted sources such as Google Play or Apple iTunes as these apps are generally monitored and researched.

The easiest way to find out whether or not an app you are considering downloading is safe is to Google both the company who created the application and the application itself. Read reviews and commentary before making your decision. If you want to gamble via your mobile device, consider the applications which are created and backed by well-known and trusted online casinos. Even the most innocent of applications can often have a loophole which could put your personal and sensitive details in danger of being stolen.