Android users No. 1 vulnerable to hackers, data revealed; iOS drop from 2nd to 15th in ‘most vulnerable’ list

By Kaye Reese / 2017.01.11
A new set of security flaws dubbed "Quadrooter" was recently discovered and it affects all versions of the Android mobile operating system. This means that the exploit can be used to attack more than 900 million Android units.

Bad news for Android users, as data revealed that handsets running on Android OS were more vulnerable to hackers as opposed to Apple's iOS-run devices. This comes as a drastic change from 2015 reports, when iOS-run devices were found to have the second most number of vulnerabilities, while Android devices were merely 15th in the list.

The results were based from numbers crunched by CVE Details, which showed that Android had about 523 flaws in its systems. Meanwhile, iOS-run devices were ranked 15th with 161 such issues. The sheer number of flaws indicated that Android-run devices were more prone to hacking as opposed to its iOS counterparts, according to Phone Arena.

Vulnerabilities, the report said, were flaws in the OS that hackers could exploit. This include gaining access to sensitive information like contacts, messages, calls, passwords, credit card details and more.

Other OS on the vulnerability list

Trailing after Android devices in the list were Debian Linux, which had 319 vulnerabilities; Ubunto Linux, which had 278 vulnerabilities; Linux Kernel, which had 217 vulnerabilities; the Mac OS X, which had 215 vulnerabilities; Windows 10 OS, which had 172 vulnerabilities, and the Windows 8.1, which had 154 vulnerabilities, according to Business Insider.

This new finding can definitely affect Google's popularity, which currently holds 90 percent of the smartphone market, according to IDC. Samsung was the number one Android manufacturer despite the recall of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. The next best players were Huawei and Oppo.

Android vulnerabilities

That said, Android manufacturers better watch out for vulnerabilities, both internal and external, that expose their handsets to possible exploitation. For example, there is a Trojan malware that targets Android phones in particular, which reroutes the phone's DNS to gain access to sensitive information, according to ZDNet. This means that Android users can potentially have their information subjected to identity theft and fraud.

Of course, with nearly 90 percent of the smartphone market, Android manufacturers would do well to protect its users to ensure their foothold in the arena. Stay tuned for more technology news and updates.

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