Researchers from F-Secure came across a large number of Trojans that were initially designed to seamlessly send SMSs to premium rate numbers with the purpose of filling the pockets of the cybercriminals who launch them. The only problem is that the latest series of these malicious apps contain a bug in the source code that makes them crash.
Identified as Trojan:Android/RuFailedSMS.A
, the applications request the same permissions as most of these Trojans do, including permission to access storage, network communication, services that cost money and phone calls.
To make sure as many individuals as possible fall in the trap, these apps are masqueraded as popular ones. For now, experts found the Trojan disguised as Add_It_Up, Advanced_Launcher_Lite, Animal_Sudoku, AnySoftKeyboard, AppInventor_Toggle, Astronomical_Flashlight, Battleship_Sudoku, Chinese_Chess, Christmas_Ringtones, Coloring_pages
, and many others.
Due to an exception in its code, the Trojan doesn’t actually do anything, instead it crashes and terminates, the phone displaying an error.
Programmed to target users from Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, hundreds of these malicious apps were found on third-party Android markets.
Even though at the moment none of the applications that hide RuFailedSMS
are working, this can change at any minute and that’s why it’s important to be aware of these threats.
Working or not, the products offered by security solutions providers detect these applications as being malicious and that’s why it’s always recommended to install a mobile security application on your smartphone.
I also advise everyone to avoid third-party markets and shady websites that offer Android apps. We've seen how even Google is having a hard time keeping the official Android Market clean
, so you can only imagine what takes place on other websites.
Many smartphone owners haven’t felt the destructive powers of a mobile virus, but with their numbers constantly increasing, it’s only a matter of time until everyone experiences what they’re capable of.