Apple’s iPhone line of smartphones continues to be popular among consumers. Unfortunately, they’re also well-liked by a less savory group, hackers. Business Insider recently documented on a new study that discovered that the iPhone ranks as the most hacked mobile device. And most stunning? It’s not even close – the iPhone is the most hacked by a lot.
The most hacked
Business Insider cites research conducted recently by Web security firm SourceFire – “25 Years of Vulnerabilities” – in its story. As outlined by Source Fire, iPhones have registered 210 CVE – Critical Vulnerabilities – reports. In comparison, mobile devices powered by the Android operating system have just received 24 CVE reports. That’s a major difference.
This begs the obvious question: Why have iPhones been hacked so many more times than have Android mobile devices? As with so many other big questions, there are no easy answers. Business Insider ponders whether part of the reason might be the iPhone’s popularity. The devices, in spite of everything, remain a top seller. But the SourceFire report states that Android has received fewer CVEs in 2012 than it did in 2011. This drop happened even though Android enjoyed a big rise in market share last year.
In an interview with the ZDNet Web site, the author of the SourceFire report marvels if hackers don’t target the iPhone more often because it’s more of a challenge. Since of course, Android relies on an open platform. Consequently it’s relatively easy for criminals and scammers to create malicious apps for this platform. Users can then download them to their phones themselves. Hacking the iPhone, which does not use an open platform, might be more challenging. And that may inspire the nation’s best hackers.