Security Risk of QR Code

Due to fast readability through our smartphone camera, the QR (Quick Response) code is now widely accepted. Now QR codes are everywhere: magazines, billboards, posters, and more. With the scan of a QR code, users can gain immediate access to the promoter’s information and complete various tasks that would otherwise require a lot more work-around. Due to the display size limitation, most mobile devices do not show the URL of the web site and most users are not even aware that QR codes can also be malicious, giving scammers a means to trick users.

"Mobile malware increased more than 1,000-percent in 2012 alone.” - Catalin Cosoi, Chief Security Researcher, BitDefender.

In this article, we will discuss the potential security issues related to QR codes and how our Scan2D app will help the users on this problem:

Malicious software distribution

In general, with the QR code, users don’t need to enter the URL manually. They only need to scan QR code, then users will be taken to the website directly without notifying the URL, so there is no moment of doubt before the smartphone is attacked or led to a harmful site. Scammers generally use malicious websites to distribute malware to users’ smartphones, typically a JavaScript Trojan virus. When the website comes up, the JavaScript automatically runs, embedding the Trojan into your system. Once those malwares are installed on the smartphone (which does not need any action from the user’s side most time), they exploit the smartphone and enable a hacker to gain access to messages, GPS, camera(s), phone conversations, etc.


“Phishing” is a popular way of hacking web accounts. Attackers send a fake web login page emulating the website it’s claiming to be. Most people judge a website by its look and feel, and phishing pages look exactly similar to legitimate websites. Due to the limitation of the display space, the browsers or apps in mobile devices normally don’t show the full address, making users more vulnerable. When the user uses this fake page to log in, their information is sent to the attacker, giving them full access to the account.

The QR code itself cannot be hacked, but hackers or scammers can use their phishing QR Code to cover the real one on the poster, or they can also print the similar kind of fake posters with a QR Code that leads to a phishing web site and put it in public places. With so many companies are using QR codes, how can a consumer tell whether the QR code is from a company they trust or is a forgery?

Scan QR codes with Scan2D app

Scan2D is the best total solution of the QR Code because our app is designed to provide users with a quick and safe QR Code management platform. Coupled with all of the intuitive social features, Scan2D app comes with a built-in QR Code security and reputation feature to stay a step ahead of potential threats and takes the risk out of using QR codes. It lets you visit trusted sites immediately and warns before you open a potential dangerous and suspicious sites.