A banking trojan capable of stealing money by sending soft offensive SMS messages has infected nearly 5,000 Android phones. Known as Faketoken, the malware was first detected in 2014 and circulated again with a new approach, targeting mobile phones with the Google system. The return of the threat was pointed out by cybersecurity company Kaspersky on Monday (13).
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According to Kaspersky experts, it is common for malware designed to attack cell phones to take advantage of SMS technology to spread, sending infected links to the victim's contacts. What is surprising in this case is the triggering of offensive messages to numbers from abroad, a tactic never before seen by company researchers.
Cell phone scam uses SMS to steal money and makes 5,000 victims Photo: Luciana Maline / TechTudo
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Although there is no explanation for the hostile nature of the texts, the international number is an essential part of the coup. This is because the cost of sending messages abroad is higher compared to local tariffs, which increases the amount that users have to pay if their cell phones are contaminated.
"Faketoken's message triggering activities are charged to the owners of the infected device. Before sending anything, it confirms that the victim's bank account has enough balance. If the account has money, the malware will recharge the cell phone account. before continuing to send messages ", explains Kaspersky in a publication on the official website.
The cybersecurity company also said it did not know whether the new Faketoken campaign was punctual or marked the beginning of a new trend. Whatever the criminals plan, it is important to take some precautions to protect yourself.
First, download only official apps from the Play Store and disable the option that allows programs to download from external sources. Generally, malware spreads to stores other than Google, that is, if you follow this first guideline it will be much safer.
Another important recommendation is not to click on links of messages sent via SMS, even if the sender is known and trusted. Finally, remember to install an antivirus on your smartphone and keep it updated.
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