MAS is at the Highest Demand in 4 Years According to Survey

Appdome unveiled the findings of its 4th Annual Global Consumer Survey of Mobile App Security MAS at the OWASP Global AppSec conference. The survey shows that mobile end users are highly aware of the increasing security, fraud, and privacy risks associated with mobile apps, and they expect mobile brands and enterprises to implement effective defenses against these threats.

To create the 2024 survey, Appdome partnered with the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) and included survey questions that measures consumer alignment with the OWASP Mobile Application Security (MAS) standard, as well as anti-fraud and other cyber objectives. The voice of the global consumer was clear – not only do they demand the protections included in the OWASP MAS standard, but the survey data reveals a challenge to the entire mobile industry to improve the state of the art of mobile app protection, globally.

“We’re very excited to bring the consumer voice into OWASP’s Mobile App Security standard,” said Andrew van der Stock, Executive Director of OWASP. “Our goal has always been to enable mobile app security and development teams to keep their mobile app protections up to date with industry demands. Knowing what protections global end users expect when they use mobile apps in life and work supports our work to ensure robust mobile app protection for everyone.”

The 2024 survey data adds to the 120,000+ consumer voices gathered from 12 countries over the past four years, making the Appdome Global Consumer Survey the largest single collection of consumer data on mobile app security, privacy, anti-fraud, and other attack vectors. Mobile applications have taken center stage in consumers’ daily life. Mobile app protection – consisting of mobile app security, malware defense, fraud prevention, and privacy – is now critical to the way consumers choose and use mobile apps, and also critical in whether they choose to stay with and promote a brand.

“Cyber professionals work tirelessly to keep applications, networks, transactions, and users safe while Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other attacks increase,” said Tom Tovar, co-creator and CEO of Appdome. “Global consumers continue their march upward in recognizing the importance of this work and it’s clear that they overwhelmingly support a broadening cyber, anti-fraud, anti-malware, anti-bot mandate, and higher OWASP standard, inside brand and enterprise mobile apps everywhere.”

Several upward trends are revealed in the 2024 data, including consumers’ use of mobile apps, their awareness of mobile attack vectors, the growing expectation of protection in apps and consumers’ willingness to be brand advocates if protected. Here are some of the cyber expectations in mobile apps that hit all-time highs in the 2024 Survey:

  • Mobile vs. Web: 55.3% — the highest level ever— of global consumers say they use mobile applications more than web, dwarfing preference for online/web at 22.5%. Furthermore, with 63.4% — the highest level ever— say that they use more than 6 mobile apps weekly.
  • Total Protection: 99.5% —the highest level ever— of global consumers demand total protection in mobile apps including mobile app data, account integrity, login, data storage, data in transit, and protection from malware and fraud.
  • Social Engineering: 70.6% —the highest level ever— of global consumers have themselves, or know someone who has, been a victim of social engineering or other fraud attacks.
  • Fraud Prevention: 83.5% —the highest level ever— of global consumers demand brands proactively prevent mobile fraud from happening rather than reimburse them post-fraud.
  • Features vs. Security: 87.4% —the highest level ever— of global consumers say that mobile app protection is equally or more important than mobile app features in their decision to use a mobile app, with 90.6% saying they evaluate the security claims of the brand before downloading a mobile app.
  • Fear Inaction: The number of global consumers who fear “developers don’t care” about protecting the mobile app has increased by 258%, topping the four-year survey at 1 in 4 of all respondents.

Consumers maintained strong perspectives on these top trends in the 2024 survey:

  • Rewarding Secure Brands: 94.6% —the highest level ever— of respondents state they will become brand advocates for mobile brands that protect their apps and use. More than half (53.6%) said they would use the highest forms of advocacy, such as app store reviews or social media endorsements.
  • Consequences for Insecure Apps: 96.7% —the highest level ever— of respondents state they would abandon a mobile brand for failing to protect their app and use, and 73.9% saying they would encourage others to abandon the mobile brand too.

“It’s clear that consumers are taking mobile brand promises and the emerging threat of AI attacks seriously,” said Alan Bavosa, VP of Security Products at Appdome. “AI-based attacks will take mobile app risks to a new level, and mobile brands and enterprises need to change their cyber delivery models to meet the accelerating threat head on and maintain user trust and engagement on mobile platforms.”

To obtain Appdome’s 4th Annual “Global Consumer Expectations of Mobile App Security Survey,” please visit Appdome Survey.

To learn more about the OWASP Mobile App Security (MAS) standard and join the OWASP community, please visit OWASP MAS here.

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About Author

Taylor Graham, marketing grad with an inner nature to be a perpetual researchist, currently all things IT. Personally and professionally, Taylor is one to know with her tenacity and encouraging spirit. When not working you can find her spending time with friends and family.