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Android, iPhone are Top Fraud Targets, Study Finds

A Javelin Strategy & Research report on mobile payments found that the two most popular smartphone platforms are targets for fraudsters.

Consumers who use Android and iPhone devices to conduct mobile payments and mobile banking are top targets of fraudsters, according to a new report from Javelin Strategy & Research.

The research firm says that Android is especially vulnerable in the $20 billion mobile payments market because of its large and growing user base and open source platform. However, according to Javelin, the 33 million iPhone users are also attractive targets, as they spend more on average and shop more frequently with their smartphones than Android users.

Javelin found that iPhone users spend 49% more money shopping through the mobile browser on their phone than through mobile apps, with $2.7 billion spent via mobile browser and $1.8 billion spent through an app.

Likewise, Android users spent 38% more, making $2.9 billion in mobile payments through their mobile browser, and $2.1 billion through the mobile app. Users of all other smartphones spent approximately $1.3 billion via a mobile browser.

According to the firm, shopping through the mobile browser presents greater security risks for smartphone owners, because mobile browsers are more susceptible to threats like phishing, website spoofing, and man-in-the-mobile attacks than the mobile app.

“To minimize security risks, we recommend that businesses and consumers utilize apps for their mobile transactions,” said Al Pascual, industry analyst of security, risk and fraud at Javelin, in a statement. “We also recommend that businesses focus first on app development for iOS when considering mobile device security– in addition, iPhone owners are over 30% more likely to use their smartphones to make mobile purchases than Android users, and they have a higher monthly median purchase amount for the app than Android users.”

[See Also: Security Vs. Convenience in Mobile]

Bryan Yurcan is associate editor for Bank Systems and Technology. He has worked in various editorial capacities for newspapers and magazines for the past 8 years. After beginning his career as a municipal and courts reporter for daily newspapers in upstate New York, Bryan has ... View Full Bio

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