Millions of Android smartphones come pre-loaded with this malware

Android is the most popular mobile operating system in the world, with over 3 billion active users. However, its popularity also makes it a target for malware developers. In fact, a recent study found that millions of Android devices are infected with malware.

Pre-loaded Malware Found on Millions of Android Smartphones

Malicious Android Apps

McAfee has released a complete list of infected applications, adding more to the growing list of infected devices. However, a new study has revealed that a large number of Android phones already contain malware right out of the box. This is because manufacturers delegate certain tasks to firmware suppliers, which allows malicious actors to infect products with malicious codes at the time of their delivery.

One type of plugin that has been identified as a potential threat is proxy plugins. These plugins allow criminals to “rent” devices for up to five minutes, which gives them plenty of time to infect smartphones. This method of inserting malware started when the price of mobile phone firmware dropped. As competition among firmware vendors became increasingly intense, vendors reportedly turned to less expensive companies.

Fyodor Yarochkin, Principal Researcher at Trend Micro, explained that “There’s nothing free”. He further stated that due to the fierce competition among firmware vendors, firmware began to be equipped with an undesirable function called silent plugins. The researcher scanned dozens of firmware for malware and found more than 80 such plugins.

The malware that is found on these devices turns them into proxies that are then used to steal and sell SMS messages, take over social media and online email accounts. Researchers estimate that infected devices number in the millions worldwide, with a concentration in Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe. This study also claims that the malicious actors themselves have said that the number of infected devices is around 8.9 million.

How Malware Infects Android Devices

There are a number of ways that malware can infect Android devices. One common way is through malicious apps. Developers often disguise these apps as legitimate ones, but they contain hidden code that can steal personal information like credit card numbers and passwords. Malware can also infect Android devices through malicious websites or emails.

What Malware Can Do on Android Devices

Once installed on an Android device, malware can do a variety of things. It can steal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers. It can also install other malicious apps on the device. Malware can also be used to track users’ location, monitor their activities, and even take control of their devices.

How to Protect Your Android Device from Malware

Dangerous Android and iOS Apps

There are a number of things you can do to protect your Android device from malware. Here are a few tips:

  • Only download apps from trusted sources, such as the Google Play Store.
  • Be careful about what links you click on in emails and on websites.
  • Keep your device’s operating system and apps up to date.
  • Install a mobile security app.
  • Be careful about what personal information you share online.

What to Do If Your Android Device is Infected with Malware

If you think your Android device is infected with malware, there are a few things you can do. First, try to uninstall the malicious app. If you can’t uninstall the app, you can try to reset your device to factory settings. You should also install a mobile security app and scan your device for malware. If you find any malware, the mobile security app should be able to remove it.

Conclusion

Android malware is a serious threat, but there are a number of things you can do to protect yourself. By following the tips above, you can help keep your Android device safe from malware.

In addition to the tips above, here are some other things you can do to protect your Android device from malware:

  • Use a strong password for your device.
  • Enable two-factor authentication for your Google account.
  • Be careful about what permissions you grant to apps.
  • Keep your device’s security settings up to date.
  • Back up your device regularly.

By following these tips, you can help keep your Android device safe from malware.

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