As the popularity of Android smartphones continues to surge, so does the wave of hackers willing to take advantage of unwitting users.
According to a blog from Kaspersky Lab, the mobile security firm, new ‘scareware’ is now being targeted at Android handset owners in an effort to persuade them to download malware.
‘Scareware’ works conjunction with malicious websites which aim to convince Android users their smartphone is infected via a fake virus scan. As a cure for their compromised handsets, owners are then encouraged to download an anti-virus app which is actually an SMS Trojan designed to surreptitiously send text messages to premium rate numbers.
Kaspersky Lab researcher Denis Maslennikov, claims “several search results” already lead to ‘scareware’ websites meaning “cybercriminals have started to use almost the same techniques [as with desktop computers] in order to force users to download and install malware”.
On the plus side, ‘scareware’ techniques appear to be confined to unconvincing web pages written entirely in Russian. This means it’s unlikely many smartphone owners will fall for the tricks of conniving Android hackers.
For Life Of Android’s guide to keeping your Google-powered safe, check out advice column here.