CYBER researchers have discovered two shady Android apps designed to drain your bank account.
The software disguises itself as harmless antivirus apps that are available for free on the Google Play Store.
However, once downloaded, they install malware on the device that steals your online banking logins.
Details of the malware were presented in a report this week by Fox-IT, a division of cybersecurity firm NCC Group.
It follows the discovery of six examples of malware known as SharkBotDropper on the Play Store in April.
Now two more appear to have slipped through Google’s security checks with more than 60,000 downloads.
The apps discovered by Fox-IT are:
- Mister Phone Cleaner (50,000+ downloads)
- Kylhavy Mobile Security (over 10,000 downloads)
Google has since removed the bunch, but that doesn’t protect anyone who’s already downloaded them.
If you have them installed on your phone, you should remove the apps immediately and consider changing your passwords.
If users have one of these apps installed, Sharkbot can spy on their online banking credentials in a variety of ways.
It is a banking Trojan known for tricking victims into entering their credentials in fake pop-ups.
The valuable data is then secretly sent to hackers, who can then access everything, including email, social media, and bank accounts.
According to reports, the Trojan can also steal online logins by logging keystrokes and allowing attackers to remotely access infected devices.
Once they have access to your online bank account, they can initiate transfers.
Hackers “speak Russian”
Experts from discovered six apps loaded with the malware back in April.
The dubious apps were downloaded more than 11,000 times, according to Check Point Research, which uncovered the scam.
More than a third of the victims are believed to have come from the United Kingdom, and the remainder have mostly been traced back to Italy.
They have since been removed from the Play Store.
Experts assume that the perpetrators from their investigations speak Russian.
Adding to the suspicion, they found that the apps were programmed not to work against people in China, India, Romania, Russia, Ukraine or Belarus.
But they said they didn’t have enough evidence to point a finger at who exactly was behind it.
“If we look at the number of installs, we can assume that the threat actor hit the mark with their method of spreading malware,” said Alexander Chailytko, cyber security at Check Point Software.
“The threat actor has strategically chosen a location for applications on Google Play that users trust.
“Also of note here is that the threat actors are sending messages with malicious links to the victims, resulting in widespread adoption.
“All in all, the threat actors’ use of push messages, which solicit a response from users, is an unusual propagation technique.
“I think it’s important for all Android users to know that they should think twice before downloading an antivirus solution from the Play Store.”
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/9369824/urgent-warning-android-phone-delete-dangerous-apps/ Urgent warning for MILLIONS of Android phone owners – you must delete dangerous apps that are stealing your banking logins