North American Developers View Cyber-Warfare as Top Threat

A recent Evans Data survey showed that North American developers consider nation-state-sponsored cyber-warfare as the primary threat to security.

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North American developers view cyber-warfare from nation-states as the number one threat to computer security, according to a recent Evans Data survey.

The Evans Data Global Development Survey showed that while North American developers view cyber-intrusions from nation-states as the primary threat to computer security, developers in other geographical regions have different perceptions. The survey results come amid U.S. government claims that Russian hackers have been involved in attempts to influence the presidential election and undermine the U.S. democratic process.

However, the survey, conducted in six languages across four continents, showed that developers in both the emerging Latin American and Asia-Pacific regions view the largest threat as "intellectual property thieves and corporate spies," while those in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region cited "cyber-crime syndicates" as the biggest threat they have to worry about.

"It's interesting to find that developers in other parts of the globe don't have the same conception of cyber-warfare as a threat as we do here," Janel Garvin CEO of Evans Data, said in a statement. "This may be due to recent news coverage on speculation about cyber-warfare in the United States, which tends to bring this issue to the forefront, or it may be that the U.S. really is more of a target from other nation-states."

The Evans Data survey also showed that 27 percent of respondents cited public clouds as being most vulnerable to compromise, while 25 percent said they considered mobile clients as most vulnerable. In addition, the survey showed that developers listed mobile malware and viruses as the leading security concern on mobile devices.

Meanwhile, another recent Evans Data survey indicated that the number of software developers building mobile applications reached 12 million in 2016 and is expected to surpass 14 million by 2020.

The report, entitled "Evans Data's Global Development Population and Demographics Study," found that the number of developers writing for mobile devices has increased by more than five times since Evans Data began measuring developer participation in mobile development in 2006. Back then, just over 2 million developers were targeting mobile, the company said.

However now, with 12 million developers focusing on mobile, more than half of the estimated total worldwide developer population of 21 million is creating mobile apps, Evans Data said.

"Mobile development has really become ubiquitous" Garvin said in a statement. "Mobile devices are everywhere, but while most modern applications support mobile devices, not all developers are working on the client target side. Some are server or back-end oriented or are concentrating more on the application logic or more and more on newer machine learning implementations, so watching the number of mobile developers move from just under 2 million 10 years ago to 12 million today just provides a reflection of the use of mobile devices today."

The Evans Data study also estimates current software developer populations across four major regions and 40 different countries. Now in its 20th edition, the study also delves into data on the numbers of developers forecast to adopt technologies now and in the future.

For instance, the Evans Data study showed that the number of mobile developers who target Android first is 5.9 million, versus 2.8 million that target iOS as a first platform. Most developers target multiple mobile platforms, so secondary platform targets differ and often include competing platforms, Evans Data said.