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Over 10 Million Android Users Targeted With Premium SMS Scam Apps

Over 10 Million Android Users Targeted With Premium SMS Scam Apps

Oct 26, 2021
A global fraud campaign has been found leveraging 151 malicious Android apps with 10.5 million downloads to rope users into premium subscription services without their consent and knowledge. The  premium SMS scam  campaign — dubbed " UltimaSMS " — is believed to commenced in May 2021 and involved apps that cover a wide range of categories, including keyboards, QR code scanners, video and photo editors, spam call blockers, camera filters, and games, with most of the fraudulent apps downloaded by users in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, the U.A.E., Turkey, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, the U.S., and Poland. Although a significant  chunk of the apps  in question has since been removed from the Google Play Store, 82 of them have continued to remain available in the online marketplace as of October 19, 2021. It all starts with the apps prompting users to enter their phone numbers and email addresses to gain access to the advertised features, only to subscribe the victims to premium SM
Joker Malware Apps Once Again Bypass Google's Security to Spread via Play Store

Joker Malware Apps Once Again Bypass Google's Security to Spread via Play Store

Jul 09, 2020
Cybersecurity researchers took the wraps off yet another instance of Android malware hidden under the guise of legitimate applications to stealthily subscribe unsuspecting users for premium services without their knowledge. In a report published by Check Point research today, the malware — infamously called Joker (or Bread) — has found another trick to bypass Google's Play Store protections: obfuscate the malicious DEX executable inside the application as Base64 encoded strings, which are then decoded and loaded on the compromised device. Following responsible disclosure by Check Point researchers, the 11 apps ( list and hashes here ) in question were removed by Google from the Play Store on April 30, 2020. "The Joker malware is tricky to detect, despite Google's investment in adding Play Store protections," said Check Point 's Aviran Hazum, who identified the new modus operandi of Joker malware. "Although Google removed the malicious apps from the P
The Drop in Ransomware Attacks in 2024 and What it Means

The Drop in Ransomware Attacks in 2024 and What it Means

Apr 08, 2024Ransomware / Cybercrime
The  ransomware industry surged in 2023  as it saw an alarming 55.5% increase in victims worldwide, reaching a staggering 5,070.  But 2024 is starting off showing a very different picture.  While the numbers skyrocketed in Q4 2023 with 1309 cases, in Q1 2024, the ransomware industry was down to 1,048 cases. This is a 22% decrease in ransomware attacks compared to Q4 2023. Figure 1: Victims per quarter There could be several reasons for this significant drop.  Reason 1: The Law Enforcement Intervention Firstly, law enforcement has upped the ante in 2024 with actions against both LockBit and ALPHV. The LockBit Arrests In February, an international operation named "Operation Cronos" culminated in the arrest of at least three associates of the infamous LockBit ransomware syndicate in Poland and Ukraine.  Law enforcement from multiple countries collaborated to take down LockBit's infrastructure. This included seizing their dark web domains and gaining access to their backend sys
Mouabad Android Malware calling to Premium numbers; Generating revenue for its Master

Mouabad Android Malware calling to Premium numbers; Generating revenue for its Master

Dec 11, 2013
Android platform is a primary target for malware attacks from few years and during 2013, more than 79% of mobile operating malware threats are taking place on Android OS. I have been working on Android Malware architectures since last two years and created 100's of sample of most sophisticated malware for demo purpose. Till now we have seen the majority of Android malware apps that earn money for their creators by sending SMS messages to premium rate numbers from infected devices. Security researchers at Lookout identified an interesting monetized Android Malware labeled as ' Mouabad ', that allow a remote attacker to make phone calls to premium-rate numbers without user interaction from C&C servers by sending commands to the malware. The technique is not new, but infection from such app notified first time in the wild. The variant dubbed MouaBad . p. , is particularly sneaky and to avoid detection it waits to make its calls until a period of time after the scree
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Android developer said 'F-Secure can say that anything is malware'

Android developer said 'F-Secure can say that anything is malware'

Mar 07, 2013
As the popularity of Android has boomed, more and more malware is targeting the platform. Digital miscreants are using fraudulent developer accounts on Google's Play marketplace to spread malware. According to latest  Mobile Threat report from F-Secure , Android malware continued to gain in share in 2012 and was responsible for 79 percent of all threats for the year, up from 66 percent in 2011, but Google developer responded with," F-Secure can say that anything is malware ". F-secure report said, In the fourth quarter alone, 96 new families and variants of Android threats were discovered, which almost doubles the number recorded in the previous quarter.  According to official Google figures, there are over 700,000 apps and games in the Play marketplace and malware on Android jumped 850 percent between 2012 and this year. Whereas an Google Android developer reply to TechCrunch technology generalist ," They say they detected Trojans  but they di
Android Malware that can DDoS Attacks from your smartphone

Android Malware that can DDoS Attacks from your smartphone

Dec 28, 2012
The Russian anti-virus vendor Doctor Web has found a new malicious program for Android which allows hacker groups to carry out mobile denial of service attacks. While it's not entirely clear how the Trojan is spread, researchers suspect that the attackers use social engineering tactics since the malware appears to disguise itself as a Google Play clone. This malware works in the background without your knowledge. Once it is activated it searches for its command and control center and sends out information regarding your device there. One piece of information that will be sent is your phone number. The criminals will be using this number to send text messages to your phone to control the malware. Dubbed TheAndroid.DDoS.1.origin, creates an application icon, similar to that of Google Play. If the user decides to use the fake icon to access Google Play, the application will be launched. When it receives a DDoS attack command, the malware starts to send data packets to the sp
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