Sophos is known for security. So it should as no surprise that we listen when they tell us about the top five different types of Android Malware. The shocking news coming straight out of left field is that Cracked apps take up a pretty hefty amount of the Android Malware scene. Crazy I know.
How did Sophos come across this information? They say they collected statistics from the Android users that downloaded the Sophos security app. The application would track and identify the Top five sources of malware that are affecting Android right now, said Senior security consultant from Sophos, Graham Cluely on Naked security. Sophos collected this data from Android devices in over 118 different countries.
There is a sense of nagging importance to mobile security and paying close attention to it could head good results. Letting it fall by the way side as many people have with other online security is bad mojo. You don't want to be the guy that loses his identity over bad choices of mobile web usage or, god forbid, have your account hacked for Order and Chaos online. Don't let all those hours spent level capping during work go to waste. Now some good news in all this is that, as some of you may already know, Google is usually pretty hasty in action when it comes to thwarting any malware or security threats that land on the Play store. Just recently they also announce a service that active scans for any bad apps or malware security threats which definitely helps in its own right. This is a tiny silver lining for the people out there who will just continue to throw their mobile privacy to the wind. But, a VERY tiny silver lining indeed, as it won't stop all threats, only better the chances people won't stumble upon any bad apps. Just last week security researchers found that there were multiple ways to bypass Google play Bouncer's security checks through exploits. So the system, (in this case and as always) isn't iron clad. Now you can bet Google has already caught wind of all this and will have things patched up fairly soon. I mean it was last week, and Google takes security pretty seriously. You should still at the very least be wary of what you are downloading. Check then re-check your app downloads. Read reviews before a download. If it seems sketch, leave it! I've found that reading at least one review and looking at the star rating tend to help immensely when coming to a conclusion of downloading anything on the Play Store. A strong indicator an app might not have the best intentions is no stars and a few good reviews. Or even a couple of stars but all bad reviews. Red flags. GIANT red flags.
Security issues on android are a real problem and the threats that infect our daily use of mobile experiences are growing and we should be aware of how to protect ourselves. To get this little ball rolling here is the list of the Top Five types of malware currently infecting our Android atmosphere. Keep in mind these are the most commonly detected apps by the Sophos security tool, so I'm going to drop the knowledge bomb and say it might be a good idea to go and hit the link I posted earlier in this article to jump to the Download of their app in the Play Store.
Top Five types of Android Malware:
- Andr/PJApps-C This type of security breach is in reference to apps that have been cracked using a widely available public tool. They are almost always illegal, although not all of them have malicious intent. Typically you would see this in an app that is posing as a paid version of its FREE and Original counterpart.
- Andr/BBridge-A This type of malware, termed BaseBridge, uses an exploit to escalate the privileges of an app which in turn allows it to have more access to your device, usually downloading and installing additional content to your device that you don't want. It also utilizes HTTP to transmit potentially identifiable information by communicating with a central server. BaseBridge can also read your SMS messages. Might make you think twice about what you write on a text or at the least do some more common and timely cleanup of those inboxes.
- Andr/BatteryD-A This malware type is one of the most annoying. It promises to increase your battery life, and we all know how wed give a kidney to have a few extra hours of use on our Android devices. Instead of living up to its promises, the app sends potentially identifiable information about the user back to a server using HTTP and then spams your device with ads till the end of time. I don't about you, but there are enough ads everywhere else.
- Andr/Generic-S This is a generic category of malware. It includes but isn't limited to applications that use privilege escalation and very aggressive adware. YAY! Sign me up.
- Andr/DrSheep-A Some of you might be familiar with this type if you are firefox users. (Not me, My laptop is sittin on Chrome). Ever heard of firesheep? It's a firefox plugin that allows users to hijak or basically hack into twitter, facebook, and Linkedin accounts that are on the same local wireless connection. Well DrSheep is the Android counterpart to this wonderful program.
Now that you have a brief understanding of a few of the worst configurations of Android based Malware, do yourself a favor and install some sort of Android Security app. As stated previously, I have included a link early in the article to the Sophos app but here are a few more to choose from, all offer a number of different features.