Pre-installed malware found loaded in millions of Android phones


Reports claim repeatedly that androids are vulnerable to malware attacks, which can cause serious data theft. Recently the android users have been warned after technology expert found a pre-installed malware loaded in millions of phones that can take over Android devices and download apps in the background as well as commit ad fraud.

Android is one of the most popular software in the world as over two billion people use it each month. But the users hardly know about the security threats, as some recent ones are being circulated via apps found in Google Play Store.

It should be noted that after the finding of Agent Smith malware, which is targeting Android phones to bombard with advertisements, six android apps that were downloaded almost 90 million times from Google Play Store were found to have been loaded with a new malware called 'PreAMo.' Recently Another threat noticed 50 malware-filled apps on Google Play Store that affected more than 30 million Android devices.

So if you are an android user, then you should know that another warning has been issued about a malware threat, after the malicious software was discovered in millions of devices which are running the Google mobile OS.

During the Black Hat cybersecurity conference in Las Vegas, a security researcher on Google's Project Zero, Maddie Stone, revealed that pre-installed malware was discovered on 7.4 million Android devices, Cnet reported in a post online.

In addition, Stone mentioned that this malware was found on budget devices that use third-party software. She also said,"If malware or security issues can make its way as a preinstalled app, then the damage it can do is greater, and that's why we need so much reviewing, auditing and analysis."

These apps already affected millions of Android devices. Stone mentioned that these affected apps are also capable of turning off Google Play Protect to spy on Android users.

"If you are able to infiltrate the supply chain out of the box, then you already have as many infected users as the number of devices they sell. That's why it's a scarier prospect and I really hope more researchers join us in vetting these processes," Stone said.

However, it should be noted that Android partners like Samsung or LG, as well as Google's own Pixel devices, are likely safe from these kinds of malware attacks, budget phone makers who rely on third-party software could be vulnerable.

How to protect own device from these malware attacks?

As per the cybersecurity company Malwarebytes, there are 10 easy ways to protect vulnerabilities.

  • Update your operating system, browsers, and plugins.
  • Enable click-to-play plugins.
  • Remove software you don't use (especially legacy programs).

By being aware of the following top tactics, you can fend off uninvited malware guests:

  • Keep an eye on the emails, to prevent phishing attacks.
  • Do not call fake tech support numbers.
  • Do not believe the cold callers.

Here are some of the basics to follow:

  • Use strong passwords and/or password managers.
  • Make sure you're on a secure connection.
  • Log out of websites after you're done.

To keep your machine clean, invest in security software and layer it up with the following:

  • Use firewall, anti-malware, anti-ransomware, and anti-exploit technology.
This article was first published on August 10, 2019