MOBILESPACE—A nasty Android bug is targeting smartphones by masquerading as a porn media player, according to Denis, a Kaspersky Lab Expert writing on SecureList.com. Once installed, instead of playing porn the malware sends SMS messages to premium-rate numbers. According to Denis, Russian hackers are behind the ruse, which he says is currently targeting Android users in Russia.
"The latest Android malware (detected as Trojan-SMS.AndroidOS.FakePlayer.b) is being distributed via clever search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, a clear sign that cyber-criminals are making every effort to infect mobile devices," he wrote. "The use of SEO is a significant development that confirms our belief that mobile malware—especially on Android devices—is a potentially lucrative business for malicious hackers."
The best way to avoid the Trojan, advised Denis, is by not manually installing it. Being asked to do so is the first warning that something is wrong, "especially since media players should not require access and permission to send SMS messages."
Denis adds that that advice holds well for Android users across the board.
"As I said in my previous blog entry on this topic, Android users should pay close attention to the services an application requests to access," he wrote. "Automatically permitting a new application to access every service it requests means you could end up with malicious or unwanted applications doing all sorts of things without requesting any additional confirmation. And you won’t know anything about it."