By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
According to anti-virus and security provider G Data, over one million malware samples have been detected on several Chinese made mobile devices and smart phones. The company does not believe the malicious software was installed by manufacturers of the phones, but rather middlemen entities who distribute or sell the devices on a wholesale basis.
Part of the reason for this stems from unscrupulous middlemen wanting to earn additional revenue beyond wholesaling. They instead install the Android malware for a fee or they derive revenue from spyware providing individual information on the phones’ usage which can be sold to others wishing to retrieve it for other uses. It can also serve unwanted adware to the user. The potential for data breaches affecting government, corporate, and individual users is worrying
The malware most often hides itself during installation of the operating system and is therefore unseen by the user. One in particular is Android.Monitor.Gsyn.B which mimics a Google Drive App. Some of the abilities of this application include: listening to the user via the microphone; copying images or sending them; listening to telephone conversations; sending or monitoring SMS; disabling antivirus software; etc.
G Data also notes that the quality of some of these malwares is poor and can generate security holes in itself, leading to hackers being able to access the device with elevated privileges.
Further information, including the reported models affected, can be read via the G Data Mobile Malware Report. (PDF)
By Darren Smith
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