End users think unsecured mobile devices are safer for surfing than PCs

Research from Kaspersky Lab shows that many users feel more secure using smartphones to surf the internet than PCs, and that a majority consider the risk of losing personal data higher on computers than on smartphones.

The new findings highlight a dangerous misconception with regards to smartphone protection and demonstrate security software is less common on mobile devices than it is on PCs.

There has been a recent increase in the number of attacks on mobile operating systems like Android and iOS, and experts expect to see considerably more of these in the future.

Despite this, users in Europe, according to the Kaspersky Lab survey, feel more secure accessing the internet via a mobile device. Altogether, 51% of those surveyed are afraid of having their computer infected with malware while surfing the internet, compared with the fact that 27% of respondents consider a virus infection on their computer a serious threat.

One interesting detail which emerged from the survey is that users consider the risk of losing personal data lower on a smartphone than on a PC, despite the fact that around a fifth of all smartphone users have already experienced the loss or theft of a mobile device.

The majority of users, over 90% in most European countries, store personal data, such as photos, emails or contact details, on their smartphones. Around one third also save login information, such as PIN codes or passwords, for various services on their mobile devices, demonstrating a large gap between secure reality and user perception.