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Smartphone Security

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Respondents who used a smartphone in the previous three months were asked about the security software that they use. Examples include anti-virus, anti-malware software, etc.

Nearly half (48%) of smartphone users said that the security software installed automatically or was provided with the operating system, while nearly one in five (19%) had installed it manually or had someone else do it for them. Over one quarter did not know if their smartphone had security software installed, while 17% said that they did not have any security software installed on their smartphone. See Table 10.1 and Figure 10.1.

Table 10.1 Percentage of individuals who use a smartphone by use of security software in the last 3 months, 2020

"" ""
Yes, installed
automatically or provided
with the operating system
Yes, installed it or
subscribed to it
or somebody else did it
No, does not use
security software
Don't know if they use
security software
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Smartphone users were asked if they restricted or refused access to their personal data when using or installing applications (apps) on their smartphone over the previous three months. When an application is installed on a smartphone, it is possible to manage the setting of the application in order to specify whether the respondent allows the application to have access to their personal data, such as geographical location, contact list, access to photos, etc. Nearly three quarters (73%) restricted or refused access at least once, while over one in five (22%) did not. Just 2% did not know it was possible, while 3% do not use apps. See Table 10.2.

Table 10.2 Individuals' restriction of access to personal data when using or installing applications in the last 3 months, 2020

Yes, at
least once
Did not know
it was possible
Do not use applications4
Yes, at least once76
Did not know it was possible2
Do not use applications3
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Respondents were further asked if they ever lost data (including information, documents, pictures or other kind of data) on their smartphone, due to a virus or other hostile program. Just 4% of smartphone users had experienced such a loss of data, while 2% did not know and 95% had never experienced loss of data due to virus or other hostile program on their smartphone. See Table 10.3.

Table 10.3 Percentage of smartphone users' who lost data on their smartphone as a result of virus or other hostile type of program within last 3 months, 2020

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