According to a new report by Informa and commissioned by the Financial Times, 19 billion instant messages were sent in 2012 compared with 17.6 billion SMS text messages.
The last few years have seen an explosion of new messaging apps which are more versatile than traditional text messages and carry the added bonus of being “free” as data limits become more generous than ever.
In fact, separate research by Ovum indicates that the transition to instant messaging cost mobile networks $25bn in 2012 and will continue to impact their bottom lines in 2013.
As mobile phones get more powerful and mobile data transfer rates improve, it’s only natural that people want a more complete messaging experience. Where a text used to suffice, people can now share pictures, doodles, audio files and even short-form video.
This is great news for mobile users who like to stay in touch with their friends but it’s important to remember that while instant messaging apps can be much cheaper and more convenient than SMS messages, they also open the door for less desirable activity.
Here are three tips to make sure that you have a great messaging experience and don’t leave all of your personal data up for grabs.
Make sure you get the real deal.
Unlike SMS messages, which are brought to you direct from your mobile network, instant messages often require a third party app. Not all apps on app stores are safe; make sure you download the right one. If you know the app has a small purchase price (like WhatsApp) don’t be tempted to download a FREE version as it might not be legitimate.
Be careful what you open
As the number of cool things we receive on our phones increases, we should be aware that cyber criminals can also use them to hide malware. If you receive an IM or friend request from someone you don’t know, proceed with caution and don’t open anything unless you trust the sender.
As our mobile devices get more sophisticated they hold more of our personal data. This makes it more important than ever to make we protect them. Installing an antivirus app on your phone can make sure that you don’t follow malicious links or download infected files which could expose your contacts and saved passwords.
AVG AntiVirus for Android can help you keep your personal information safe and secure on your phone and even recover your device should it get lost or stolen.
For more information, check out http://avgclick.me/getAVGMob