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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: android phones

26 Android Phone Models Shipped with Pre-Installed Spyware

26 Android Phone Models Shipped with Pre-Installed Spyware

September 03, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Bought a brand new Android Smartphone? Don't expect it to be a clean slate. A new report claims that some rogue retailers are selling brand-new Android smartphones loaded with pre-installed software. Security firm G Data has uncovered more than two dozens of Android smartphones from popular smartphone manufacturers — including Xiaomi , Huawei and Lenovo — that have pre-installed spyware in the firmware. G Data is a German security firm that disclosed last year the Star N9500 Smartphone's capability to spy on users, thereby comprising their personal data and conversations without any restrictions and users knowledge. Removal of Spyware Not Possible The pre-installed spyware, disguised in popular Android apps such as Facebook and Google Drive , can not be removed without unlocking the phone since it resides inside the phone's firmware. "Over the past year, we have seen a significant [growth] in devices that are equipped with firmware-level [m
FBI Arrested CEO of 'StealthGenie' for Selling Mobile Spyware Apps

FBI Arrested CEO of 'StealthGenie' for Selling Mobile Spyware Apps

October 01, 2014Wang Wei
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has arrested the CEO of a UK-based company for allegedly advertising and selling a spyware app to individuals who suspect their romantic partners of cheating on them. The dodgy cell phone spyware application, dubbed as StealthGenie , monitors victims' phone calls, text messages, videos, emails and other communications "without detection" when it is installed on a target's phone, according to the Department of Justice. The chief executive officer of a mobile spyware maker is a Pakistani man collared 31-year-old Hammad Akbar , of Lahore, who was arrested over the weekend in Los Angeles for flogging StealthGenie spyware application and now faces a number of federal charges. According to the US Department of Justice, Akbar operates a company called InvoCode, which sold the StealthGenie spyware app online that can intercept communications to and from mobile phones including Apple, Google, and BlackBerry devices. T
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