A new security report from Apple has found that Android mobile phones are 47 times more likely to contain malware than iPhones.
Apple’s document says privacy threats are increasingly common and mostly found on Android devices that allow “parallel offloading.”
Sideloading is the distribution of apps outside of a device’s app store that can be downloaded directly or through third-party app stores.
This follows pressure from private companies and governments to force downloads of apps to the iPhone in the United States and Europe.
But Apple reports that mobile malware and the resulting security and privacy threats go hand in hand with platforms that allow sideloading, like Android devices.
“Over the past four years, Android devices have been found to have 15 to 47 times more malware infections than the iPhone,” the 31-page security report said.
Apple says more than 230,000 mobile malware infections have been reported daily by a European regulatory agency.
He reported that nearly 6 million attacks per month were detected by a major security company on its customers’ Android mobile devices.
Apple said sideloading “will cripple the privacy and security protections that have made iPhone so secure and expose users to serious security risks.”
He warned that adding sideloading could destroy the iOS ecosystem if forced to do so.
Another concern reported by Apple is how sideloading could open the door for cybercriminals to mimic the iOS App Store, tricking users into downloading notorious Trojans.
Apple notes recent Android Trojans in its report, including Banker.BR, TeaBot, and BlackRock, which steal login credentials from online services and pose as popular apps.
“Sideloading would make it easier and cheaper to perform many attacks that are currently difficult and expensive to perform on iOS,” the company’s security report read.
Apple is concerned that businesses, developers, advertisers, and users, in particular, will be affected if sideloading is supported.
He said that users will have less information about the apps up front and less control over the apps after downloading them to their devices.
Some sideloading initiatives would also require the removal of protections against third-party access to hardware, making user data more accessible to cybercriminals.
“Users may also have no choice but to load an app they need to connect with family and friends because the app is not available on the App Store,” Apple said. .
“For example, if sideloading were allowed, some companies could choose to distribute their apps only outside of the App Store.”
Apple claims the iPhone is a “highly personal device” where users store some of their most sensitive and private information.
Even if users only download from the iOS App Store, opening Apple devices to third-party apps would put all users at risk, the report says.
“The increased risk of malware attacks would put all users at increased risk, even those who prefer to download apps only from the App Store,” Apple said.
“Obviously, side loading is not in the best interests of users. “