Do You Know How Mobile App Hackers Think?

Mobile phones have become a new hunt for hackers and other evil eyes. Once compromised, our phones can easily access our personal and financial information, allowing hackers to sell information on the dark web and extort our information. Despite the rapid increase in the security threats for mobile phones, still, some organizations are not paying enough attention to the security measures. Apps are another way for hackers to hack into your phone. Malicious code can be inserted into free versions of popular applications. Once you download the application (such as antivirus software), the hacker will ask you to spend money to get rid of the virus found in the phone.

Hackers often try to infiltrate vulnerable mobile applications and cause major damage to the organization. These attacks can lead to anything from fake applications to the theft of customer data. For this purpose, mobile app testing companies are providing professional testing services for those organizations that can develop an app but are not able to make it a secure and safe application for users. 

 

If you can understand why and how hackers target mobile apps, you can then be able to protect your organization from harmful or malicious attacks. Here we are revealing some insights that can help you to develop a better defense strategy for your mobile apps.

 

Hackers have complex motives

To defend against the mobile app threats, the very first step is to develop a knowledge that why and how a hacker targets mobile apps. Common motives or rationale of hackers for hacking can be;

 

  • Monetary benefit – Some hackers have the aim of robbing personal information directly for profit, or they can sell personal information on a dark network.

  • Spying – Many of the hackers may not aim to gain any financial benefit rather they steal sensitive information or data for blackmailing purposes.

  • Data Exploitation – Hackers often want to use data or collect credentials from mobile applications to exploit them.

  • Hacks for reputation – Some hackers, including security researchers, may be seeking to enhance their own or organizational capabilities by demonstrating their skills. This usually comes in the form of notifying companies about known vulnerabilities.

 

Hackers often look for easy to target apps 

Regardless of their rationale, most hackers are looking for “the fruit hanging at the lowest.” In other words, their goal is an application that is easy to develop. It’s like an old joke: you don’t have to surpass the bear market; you just need to surpass another person.

 

Woefully, a lot of organizations consider time-to-market on top of the priority in an app development life-cycle instead of security. Hence they make common mistakes and make their applications vulnerable to attacks.

 

These vulnerabilities may include;

  • Lack of multi-factor authentication (MFA): MFA is a simple fix that can provide hackers with the extra help they need to achieve their goals.

  • Inadequate encryption: Encryption ensures that the data in the application cannot be retrieved.

  • Unsafe data storage: If the application stores sensitive customer information (such as credit cards or account numbers), this becomes a particularly important issue. For example, a bank or retail application can store this type of data.

  • Easy access without runtime application self-protection (RASP): without obfuscated code and/or applications: hackers can scan for applications that can identify patterns in the code, or execute applications without RASP defense Real-time attack.

 

Multiple phases of mobile app attacks

People usually think that mobile security attacks will happen soon and often, or as if it is an incident. However, before, during, and in the months after the attack, hackers may take much discrete steps-gathering intelligence, performing actual attacks, and preventing themselves from being caught. The following are typical stages of mobile application attacks:

 

  • Detection: At this initial stage, hackers try to choose attack/utilization targets that are consistent with their overall goals (eg, financial profits, game cheating, denial of service, etc.). 

  • Scanning: At this stage, the attacker will statically analyze the application and observe its behavior in an attempt to understand its function and how to prevent its exploitation. 

  • Obtain access rights: At this stage, use the vulnerabilities discovered during the reconnaissance and scanning stages to gain access rights. 

  • Maintain access rights: The attack techniques used in the previous stage may be very labor-intensive and require a lot of expertise and patience.

Conclusion

 

Regrettably, many organizations today are not very much concerned about the overall security of their software applications. That’s why they face a pool of threats and vulnerabilities which hackers easily exploit. If security is neglected, apps would be a complete failure and as a result, an organization won’t be able to survive in the competitive world.