Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp Messenger top blacklisted enterprise app list again

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Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp Messenger have got plenty of fans – but not so much in the enterprise as they continue to be blacklisted.

That’s the key finding from the latest quarterly report from enterprise mobile security provider Appthority. The study, the Enterprise Mobile Security Pulse Report for Q218, is based around the millions of scans the company performs for its customers, and found WhatsApp and Facebook to be similarly popular – and unpopular from a security view – for both iOS and Android.

Wickr Me, a collaboration and messaging tool, was among the most blocked apps for Android, while Tinder was among the most blocked for iOS. When it came to the most popular apps, iOS saw a spike for traffic and navigation service Waze, and Android saw uptake in secure messaging tool Telegram – with both products appearing in the Appthority index for the first time.

So why are these apps blacklisted? The majority of the banned apps were flagged by Appthority for data leakage, as well as vulnerabilities such as disabling default HTTPS encryption. The report also gives concern as to where data is shared – the report finds Android and iOS malware was particularly prominent in the US, China and Germany this quarter, despite these countries having average to good scores for trustworthy and risk.

WhatsApp Messenger, for instance, has a relatively high risk score of seven out of 10 in terms of data leakage on both iOS and Android. Facebook shares the same risk score, despite being slightly less popular among enterprises.

It is interesting to compare these findings with previous quarters. When this publication last explored an Appthority report, back in January, Tinder was again one of the top blacklisted apps, while Pokemon GO and Instagram were also frequently cited.

“By shining a light on the apps and risks commonly found and blacklisted in enterprises, our goal is to help security teams better secure their data and employees and make more informed security decisions,” said Seth Hardy, director of security research at Appthority.


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