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If users in the United States feel they have it bad when it comes to mobile malware, just think about the other countries as researchers discovered 51,000 new mobile malware threats in the first half of 2013, infecting an estimated 21 million mobile devices, according to a new survey.

The top three methods for delivering malware in 2013 continue to be app repackaging, malicious URLs, and smishing, according to the survey, according to the survey from NQ Mobile.

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“Our midyear report shows that although we discovered 51,000 new mobile malware threats, infection rates continue be very unpredictable and highly localized,” said Omar Khan, co-chief executive at NQ Mobile. “And as evidenced by the Bill Shocker malware we discovered in January which infected over 600,000 mobile devices, it takes just one successful piece of malware to create a local malware epidemic.

Highlights of report from NQ Mobile include:
• The top five most infected markets in 2013 along with their respective share of the world’s mobile infected devices were China (31.71 percent), Russia (17.15 percent), India (10.38 percent), U.S. (6.53 percent) and Thailand (6.04 percent)
• China continued to be the leading market for infected mobile devices with over 6.7 million infected devices, a 43 percent increase from 1Q to 2Q 2013.
• Ukraine saw the most dramatic increase, growing 485 percent from 1Q to 2Q 2013. Russia and Ukraine together now account for almost 20 percent of the world’s mobile infections
• Mobile infections in Saudi Arabia grew 28.46 percent from 1Q to 2Q 2013
• The Southeast Asia countries of Indonesia, Malaysia Thailand and Vietnam all made the top 10 most infected market list. When combined, these countries make up 12.01 percent of the world’s mobile malware infections
• India and the United States saw the most dramatic reductions in total malware infections, with 88 and 63 percent decreases, respectively, from 1Q to 2Q 2013.

Schneider Bold

NQ’s advice to consumers around the world remains:
• Download apps only from trusted app marketplaces
• Be careful when responding to or clicking links in SMS messages
• Install a trusted mobile security solution on your mobile device.

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