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Think Twice Before Forgoing Security on The Connected Devices You Receive—or Gift—This Holiday Season!

With the Holiday festivities upon us, it’s likely that Internet connected gadgets have topped your list of things to buy. As you search with excitement to find the device that best fulfills your needs, the thought of installing security software on them might not be at the forefront of your mind. However, considering that an alarming 63 percent of mobile device owners fell victim to cybercrime in 2013, it’s important to take steps to keep the information on your mobile devices secure.

Past events continue to substantiate that securing all connected devices is the smartest and easiest way to protect against cybercrime. If you are like the staggering 57 percent of mobile device users who reported being unaware of the fact that security solutions for mobile devices existed, it’s time to explore the options.

Although it may seem like an investment you may not want to make— adding a comprehensive security solution to all your devices is the easiest way to avoid the problems and losses that stem from having your information compromised.

Think of mobile devices as mini-computers

Last year, thirty-eight percent of smartphone users fell victim to cybercrime. In fact, mobile is the fastest growing target for cybercriminals. Thus, it is vital to take precautions to ensure your device is protected against theft, loss, and cybercrime.

As technology advances, we are able to perform tasks on our smartphones and tablets that we would otherwise be able to perform from a computer—so why not start treating them like mini computers? A comprehensive security solution with protection beyond antivirus, can safeguard your device from a wider range of threats.

Why pay for antivirus when there are free alternatives, right? Wrong. 

Not all freeware is necessarily dangerous, but when it comes to protecting your devices and your identity you can’t afford to take chances. Normally, nothing is free and that’s true for most freeware solutions available. There’s always a price tag and in freeware it can range from bothersome advertisements to constant alerts prompting you to upgrade to a paid version, to scamware—free fake antivirus that may look and sound real but in reality it is just a vehicle to distribute data-stealing malware.

Don’t fall for fake antivirus

Cybercriminals can get very creative and inventive when it comes to distributing malware. The one common, and somewhat ironic, method is disguising malware as free antivirus. Usually a victim will download an “antivirus” solution and everything will seem to be okay, until the bogus software alerts the victim that they are infected with a virus. The intent is to get victim to pay for a “virus cleanup.” As an example, victims may see an alert may appear on the screen of their device, informing them of the “problem” and providing a link that takes them to what may appear like a legitimate website. When users land on the website they are presented with a paid option to remove the virus. What happens next? In most unfortunate cases, the victim purchases the “service” with a credit card thinking they are dealing with a legitimate service provider when in reality they are providing personal information to a criminal. 

To avoid being the target of this type of malware attack don’t fall for offers that are “too good to be true” from vendors you don’t recognize. Additionally, be sure to use strong and comprehensive security software that offers protection beyond anti-virus. Legitimate security software will actually detect these types of frauds and send you alerts or block them altogether.

Defend your information

Cybercrime is a very lucrative business; in 2013 criminals profited US$113 billion from victims, that’s an average of $298 per victim. As we continue to spend time on our mobile devices, attacks engineered to target mobile will also continue grow and evolve. In fact, an increase in attacks targeted at mobile has been documented.

Only a comprehensive security solution provides the strong defense against new and emerging mobile threats. Antivirus software alone does not adequately protect you against the wide range of evolving threats out there. As our connected devices continue to become more integrated and technological, the methods used to circumvent security will also become more sophisticated. Be sure you have a strategy to stay protected.

Lastly, always choose security software from a trusted security vendor. One option is Norton Security, which offers everything you need to stay protected on all your devices in a single solution. That includes PCs Macs, smartphones, and tablets—all protected, under one subscription. And if you ever do get a virus you wont be asked to pay to remove it, instead, included with your subscription you receive a 100% virus removal guarantee.


I have a Dell tablet running


I have a Dell tablet running Android OS version 4.4.2.  In the settings I chose to Encrypt the tablet.  Do I also need Anti-virus software on top of the encryption? 

Thanks, EPost