It was only a matter of time. Google’s Android Smart Phone was recently exposed to a Russian-based MalWare (Malicious Software) file called “Trojan-SMS.AndroidOS.FakePlayer.a” and is downloaded as a typical Android media player app. The Antivirus company Kaspersky has recently confirmed this, and is currently working on an Antivirus program to fix this.
This MalWare operates by appearing as a media player app. Once the app is installed on the Android phone, the trojan program starts sending SMS text messages to “premium rate” numbers, unbeknown to the device owner. Since the trojan virus’s creators are typically the ones on the opposite end of those premium numbers, they end up profiting from the scam.
This instance of malware, SMS-based, is one of the most widely-known forms of mobile viruses. SMS trojans have been around for years on cellphones, even predating smartphones. According to Mashable, the first mobile SMS virus popped up in 2004, and the first-ever Android Malware popped up in 2009.
The iPhone, Google’s Android competitor, is no apparent stranger to the virus. A while back, in October 2009, a worm, a virus that operates through computer networks both wired and wireless, appeared to innocuously change ones wallpaper to Rick Astley. Weeks later, in November of that year, it was discovered that this worm actually was capable of stealing data and even take control of the phone, acting like a botnet. This virus specifically targeted “jailbroken” iPhones with an SSH-based password that was never changed from the default, and changed the root password to something more “secure,” to a point where one was essentially locked out from entering ones phone.
So far, Apple’s iPhone hasn’t needed any Antivirus software: they simply improved their iOS, making it harder for a criminal hacker to break in. Google though needs an Antivirus software. For the first time, Google’s Android phones are showing their human side.