Mention mobile phone viruses and the chances are you will get one of two responses:

  1. It is a money making exercise for security vendors who have created the mobile phone virus myth so they can sell protection nobody needs.
  2. Hahahahahahahahahahaha.

However, the arrest of a 28 year old man in Valencia, Spain puts a different perspective on things. He has been held on suspicion of creating and distributing more than 20 variants of the mobile phone Cabir and Commwarrior worms which target Symbian driven smartphones. When it comes to mobile phone security, Windows is not the bad guy for a change, Symbian is. Mind you, this is only because there are vastly more Symbian powered handsets than there are Windows ones at the moment.

Graham Cluley, Senior technology Consultant at security specialists Sophos told DaniWeb “Mobile phone viruses are not nearly as common as the malware that strikes Windows desktops on a regular basis, but they are just as illegal in their intent. Viruses are not harmless pranks; they cause real harm disrupting business and personal communications as well as destroying and stealing sensitive data.”

Surprisingly, a Sophos survey reveals that 64 percent of IT admins admit to having no mobile security solution in place to protect smartphones and PDAs, despite 81 percent of them agreeing that mobile malware will become a significant threat sometime in the future. Perhaps, in light of this arrest, that time is now?

It all depends on the user. My PC has never ever had a virus (yet), and there was never any antivirus software installed to accomplish this. Safe browsing habits will keep any PC clean and free of viruses. The same is probably true with mobile phones.

Of course, if you're the type of user that must download every cool screensaver and new smiley pack, then yes, you most definitely need antivirus software, no matter which platform you're using.

and do for God's sakes stay away from porn. It's not a good thing.

There is nothing more comfortable than warm sand packed in around one's ears. So, repeat after me...

There. Are. No. Mobile. Phone. Viruses.
There. Are No. Mobile. Phone. Viruses.
There. Are. No...

Disagree. There are. I have seen them in action, infecting devices via Bluetooth, albeit in a controlled environment.

Admittedly, there is little malicious impact of the mobile threats that exist both in the lab and in the wild, but they do exist.

The 'la la la I am not listening' approach to IT security is never very effective in the long term :)