It’s very rare to hear about an instance when Android malware is detected, but recently a Chinese hacker tried to hack Android using a game named “The Roar of the Pharaoh.” The bug was spotted by the security team (penetration testing) from Sophos, a well known security firm. The game does not show any security or permission issues when the user installs it, so Android users believe that it is a reliable and non-malicious software and will not harm their system. Pease avoid android games and applications from unknown publishers, as they may result in a critical information leak and sometimes in an OS crash.
|New Android Malware Detected by Sophos|
The game actuallys collects all the sensitive and personal information from the device (like a normal Trojan) and sends it to the author via an SMS with premium rates, without getting the user’s permission. The Trojan sends information like phonebook entries, SMS, IMEI number, phone number, OS version etc. Though no cases of illegal usage of the users’ information have been reported yet, researchers believe that more damage can be done using this bug.
According to the vendor, the malware runs as a service called “GameUpdaterService,” which sounds like a legitimate name for an application, making the user think that a game is updating, but this is just another example of the social engineering element of a campaign which makes it look like a reliable application, next to the actual brand-jacking of a legitimate game’s name.
The application has been detected as an Stinter-A, the mobile phone companies process the money to the authors before the application user gets the bill. Michael Sutton, Vice President of security research at cloud-based security provider Zscaler, said the fake “The Roar of the Pharaoh” app for Android reflects a shift of malware authors targeting the Android platform, whether through smartphones or tablets. Fake game apps that are really Trojans are increasing and “this is a typical scam for Android now,” he added.
The interests of the hackers has now shifted from computers to Android phones. Android officials have not released a statement about this application, but have warned its users to beware of such malicious applications.
The authors have not yet been caught, and the Chinese Security is still working to put them behind bars.