50 banking smartphone apps fail on security

Research carried out by Pradeo Lab found that there were on average seven security flaws per app tested. The firm estimated that the flaws could put half a billion people who use the apps to carry out online banking at risk.

According to Clément Saad, founder and president of Pradeo, what was worrying is not only the number of establishments concerned, but also the number of techniques that worked when the company checked potential security approaches.

“We did not settle for a demonstration of the vulnerability of each application in front of a simple keylogger, but their weaknesses facing more than twenty threats. Not a single banking app successfully passed our exam, and on average, and each app was susceptible to seven breaches,” he said.

The firm said that criminals attack banking apps with many different goals: stealing passwords, spying into account behaviour, retrieving transaction validation codes to name just a few.

Saad said that while the implications of his company’s findings are far-reaching, the priority is to equip banks with the right tools to beat cyber-criminals.

“We limited our study to 50 banks,” he said. “Chances are that apps from other banking establishments are also at risk and that consequently, the number of impacted users is potentially very significant. While there have not yet been any major security issues with banking apps, banks need to address these issues.”

This article originally appeared at scmagazineuk.com

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