93% of mobile transactions blocked as fraudulent in 2019

January 30, 2020 //By Jean-Pierre Joosting
93% of mobile transactions blocked as fraudulent in 2019
A recently released report from mobile technology company, Upstream on the state of malware and mobile ad fraud finds that 93 percent of total mobile transactions in 20 countries were blocked as fraudulent in 2019.

The “Invisible Digital Threat” data is based on deployments of Upstream’s Secure-D full-stack anti-fraud platform that detects and blocks fraudulent mobile transactions mostly originated from ad fraud malware. The platform at the end of 2019 covered 31 mobile operators in 20 countries.

In the markets examined, Upstream’s security platform processed 1.71 billion mobile transactions and blocked 1.6 billion of them as fraudulent, a huge 93 percent of total transactions. It is estimated that left unchecked these transactions would have cost users $2.1bn in unwanted charges. For the industry as a whole, losses from online, mobile and in-app advertising reached $42 billion in 2019 and are expected to reach $100 billion by 2023 [according to Juniper Research].

The number of malicious apps discovered by Secure-D in 2019 rose to 98,000, up from 63K in 2018. These 98,000 malicious apps had infected 43 million Android devices.

With Android devices now accounting for an estimate 75-85% of all smartphone sales worldwide [Statista and Statcounter] Android is by far the most dominant mobile operating system (OS). At the same time it is the most vulnerable due to its open nature, making it a favorite playground for fraudsters.

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