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Dubai: Smartphone users in the UAE came under 68,063 cyberattacks from January to June, cybersecurity firm Kaspersky said on Sunday.

Its researchers said the overall dynamics showed that the “quarantine” did not have a particular influence on the UAE threat landscape.

To compare UAE with other Middle Eastern countries, the figure for Egypt is 220,000, Saudi Arabia saw 160,000 attacks, followed by Kuwait (20,000) and Oman (15,000).

Cybercriminals are paying more attention to how they are distributing malware, increasing their activity in times of crisis, Kaspersky said.

However, throughout the year, the number of attacks was not changing dramatically, which means the implementation of quarantine measures did not influence the mobile threat landscape in the region. “While 14,000 attacks on mobile users every month may seem to be a big number, it is great to see that UAE smartphone and tablet owners remained vigilant during the crisis and did not fall for scammers tricks,” said Victor Chebyshev, a security expert at Kaspersky.

In order to protect devices, Kaspersky security experts advised to only install mobile applications from official app stores, such as Google Play on Android devices or the App Store on iOS.

Users should also block the installation of programmes from unknown sources in their smartphone’s settings. “Do not bypass device restrictions as this might provide cybercriminals with limitless capabilities to carry out their attacks,” the experts said.

Users were also advised to install system and application updates as soon as they are available as they patch vulnerabilities and keep devices protected.