According to the latest Mobile Threat report from F-Secure, out of 96 new families and variants of threats to the Android OS, almost a quarter of them had to do with Premium SMS con which has your phone send out messages to premium rate numbers. These messages quickly disappear from your phone, but they leave a large charge that goes on your monthly cell bill. Ouch! Other versions of this scheme include hijacking your SMS to subscribe to a costly service.
Another form of malware steals the mobile Transaction Authentication Number (mTAN) that banks send via SMS to validate mobile transactions. This can lead to the draining of your account because the request for funds seems genuine. However, the report noted that extra security prompts when downloading Android 4.2 should help reduce these threats and cut down on these schemes. Some of them enter your Android phone through the installation of an app.
The report says that 79% of all threats were related to Android in 2012. That’s up from 66% during the previous year. Symbian was targeted for 19% of malware threats last year, down from 29% in 2011.