Dec 07, 2021 | Updated: 07:19 PM EDT

3 Things to Know About Smartphone App Security

Nov 24, 2020 11:34 AM EST

3 Things to Know About Smartphone App Security
(Photo : 3 Things to Know About Smartphone App Security)

Most people have smartphones these days. The younger generations are growing up with them, and many older generation members are abandoning landlines. They've become an integral modern society feature.

Applications come with smartphones. Each smartphone comes with some native apps, or preprogrammed ones that you see when you turn the phone on for the first time. You can also do smartphone customization by downloading whichever additional ones you want.

However, you might wonder how safe certain apps are. You might think that you have some spammy ones out there that can gunk up your smartphone in the same way that a spammy website can affect your computer's functionality.

In this article, we'll address some smartphone app security issues.

iPhones Hardly Ever Have Faulty or Dangerous Apps

If you have a business website, you might hire a cybersecurity firm to do a compliance audit or penetration testing. This makes sense because:

  • Hackers might try to access the business's sensitive data

  • The company might need to meet compliance standards

With smartphones, it's a little different. You can get multiple smartphone varieties. Most people either get iPhones or ones that run on the Android mobile operating system.

An "Android" is not a phone manufacturer. It's one of several possible smartphones running the Android operating system.

Androids download apps through the Google Play store, while iPhones download the apps you want through the App Store. Security measures are the real difference between the two.

For a manufacturer to make an App Store-ready app, they need to get through incredibly rigorous testing. Because of this, you really never have to worry about an App Store-downloaded app messing up your phone. It simply never happens.

Most Google Play store apps are okay as well, but their testing process is not as rigorous. In this respect, iPhones have better security features than Android-running smartphones.

iPhone Antivirus Programs Don't Really Exist

You might also know that if you have a tablet, laptop, or desktop, you can get:

  • Spybot-detecting programs

  • Antivirus software

You can install these on your desktop, laptop, or tablet. There are free versions, or you can pay for ones with better features. They protect you from security threats like Trojan horses, hacker activity, viruses, spyware, etc.

That's not exactly how smartphones work. With smartphones, you hardly ever see any antivirus programs because you don't need them. If you ever do see them, they're almost exclusively for Android-running phones.

There are no iPhone antivirus programs because you don't require them, regardless of how many or which apps you download. It's because of how rigorously iPhone tests their new phones before they release them into the marketplace.

iPhones are nearly impossible to hack, and Android versions are quite difficult as well. That's why, regardless of which apps you download, you don't ever need to spend money on antivirus software or similar purchases.

When You Jailbreak Your Phone, You Leave Yourself Open to Hackers

We said that it's exceedingly difficult for hackers to get smartphone access. However, if you jailbreak your phone, you open the door for them.

You jailbreak a phone when you or someone else fundamentally changes the device's software. Programs exist that let you do this.

Most people do it because they want to download phone apps that the designers did not intend for that brand to use. In other words, maybe you have an iPhone, and you want to install an Android phone app on it. You can only do that by jailbreaking the device.

That's a very foolish thing to do. Now you can download Android apps onto the iPhone, but you also leave the device open to hacker attacks in a way that it never was before.

Maybe you want to use a particular smartphone app, but your phone does not allow you to do that, short of jailbreaking it. It's far better to try to find an app with similar functionality that you can install without any software tampering.

When you jailbreak a phone, you void the warranty, and you make it easier for hackers to steal your credit card numbers, medical data, pictures, and whatever else you might have on your smartphone. That's why you should never do this.

Smartphone app security is generally very robust. It's usually only an issue if you tamper with the phone's software. You probably won't ever need to buy antivirus programs or any other add-ons, and you should be able to safely use nearly every app that's out there.

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