New malware attacks Android phones, Windows PCs to eavesdrop, steal data; iPhone, Mac users unaffected

“A recently discovered new form of Android malware called DroidCleaner can not only infect your smartphone, but also targets your PC to spy on you,” Cadie Thompson reports for CNBC.

“Researchers at the security firm Kaspersky Labs have uncovered new malware which poses as a ‘cleaner’ app — or an app used to free memory on Google’s OS — in the Google Play app store,” Thompson reports. “Once an Android user downloads the app, the malware infects the user’s smartphone and can also be uploaded to the user’s PC if they plug the device into their Windows computer in the USB drive mode. The malware that runs on an infected user’s PC can take control of the microphone on the machine and use it to eavesdrop. As soon as the microphone detects sound, it can begin to record the audio and then send it back to cyber criminals.”

Thompson reports, “As for the malware installed on a user’s smartphone, Kaspersky researcher Victor Chebyshev said in a blog post that it was the first time his firm has seen “such an extensive feature set in one mobile application.”

Some of the functions the malware can perform on an infected device include:
• Sending SMS messages
• Enabling Wi-Fi
• Gathering information about the device
• Opening arbitrary links in a browser
• Uploading the SD card’s entire contents
• Uploading all SMS messages
• Deleting all SMS messages
• Uploading all the contacts/photos/coordinates from the device master

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: If the explosion doesn’t kill you, the infection will.

“Open” in all the wrong ways.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Take To Task” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
FBI issues warning over Android malware attacks – October 15, 2012
Researchers discover serious flaw in Android app security, say HTC and Samsung ignore issue – September 28, 2012
Apple’s iPhone has passed a key security threshold – August 13, 2012
Android permissions flaw allows eavesdropping, data theft, location tracking – December 2, 2011
Massive HTC Android security flaw leaves security expert speechless – October 2, 2011
Apple’s iOS unaffected by malware as Android exploits surge 76% – August 24, 2011
Android malware records phone calls; iPhone users unaffected – August 2, 2011
Symantec: Apple iOS offers ‘full protection,’ Google Android ‘little protection’ vs. malware attacks – June 29, 2011
Malware apps spoof Android Market to infect Android phones – June 21, 2011
Google forced to pull several malware-infested apps from Android market – June 8, 2011
Android malware sees explosive growth; even faster than with PCs – April 27, 2011
Virus-laden apps infest Google’s ‘open’ Android platform; iPhone unaffected – March 3, 2011
Security firm warns of new Android trojan that can steal personal information; iPhone unaffected – December 30, 2010
Trojan infects Android smartphones; iPhone unaffected – August 10, 2010
Millions of Android phone users slammed by malicious data theft app – July 29, 2010
Unlike proactive Apple, reactive Google doesn’t block malware from Android app store – June 4, 2010
Malware designed to steal bank information pops up in Google’s Android app store – January 11, 2010″>FBI’s Android security warning means Apple’s iPhone beats Android for BYOD enterprise – October 16, 2012

33 Comments

    1. Apple’s board it is time to man up. Buy $1 billion tomorrow. 2 days later buy $2 billion AAPL shares. 2 days later buy $4 billion AAPL shares. 2 days later buy $8 billion AAPL shares. etc… This assault will end if you all man up and do your job as a publicly traded company. You would think you hadn’t a penny in the bank and wanted to be screwed over by the shorts.

      Really! Grow a pair and defend Apple investors and your stock! Do your job or resign and let someone else do it for you!

      Investors need to send Apple’s board a daily e-mail from the investors link at Apple. Man up or resign and spend some time with your family or fishing!

      This is insane! Really, is any body there at the board?!!!

      1. Exactly WHAT GOOD does buying back stock do to fend off improper competition???

        Why should Apple waste cash to buy AAPL instead of spending it where it belongs (innovation, talent, research)????

        When a company goes and buys back stock, it is clear that their growth and innovation is over. It has then become a Con Edison — a purveyor of commodity.

        Let us hope Apple NEVER ever buys back ANY of their stock. There is no question in my mind, there are several million better ways of spending $140B.

        1. although I’m not sure if apple should do big buy backs (besides those already purchases already planned to stop stock dilution) I would like to point out Edison Int. has a P.E of 14.5 . Apple has a P.E of 8.9.

          I would be SUPER HAPPY for apple to have a P.E of 14.5, the stock would be over 700.

          aapl now has P.E lower than the S&P average.
          I don’t know what apple should do to boost it’s stock but where aapl is now is silly, and investors are getting more and more angry.

      2. The ONLY — yes, ONLY — think huge stock buybacks will do is pump up the stock in the short term. That is great for the people who are ONLY in it for short term gain.

        As I’ve said here before, short term investors (in my mind people who invest with the only intent of maximizing their profit in the next 2-3 years) are happy if they make 20% in under a year instead of 1,000% in 5+ years. Make a quick buck.

        Buybacks pump up the stock over the short term. They do absolutely nothing for long term unless the company buys back a HUGE fraction (and I do mean HHUUGGEE fraction, say 30% or more) of the outstanding stock. Apple is never going to do that. Thus any buyback is a short term pump of the stock.

        Sure, Jersey_Trader, go on beating the drum for Apple to do something stupid and line your pockets in the short term.

        I’m much more for Apple investing in things that will create long term growth: new manufacturing processes and facilities, new research efforts, strategic acquisitions, strategic IP purchases, etc. If in ten years Apple is 10 times the company it is today, then I’m 100% behind such a plan.

        1. I am a very long term owner and investor in AAPL. It is not the pushing up that I want. It is a stop to the pushing down for 4 months. Pick a point and say here and no lower. If Apple can’t see AAPL as an investment than no other investor should. Unlike many companies that have these group attach and bleeding of their stock value. Apple has the resources to hold the line and force these shorts to go elsewhere and bleed some other stocks dry. There is a point that Apple’s money and assets will be used by someone else to buy Apple with Apple’s assets when the stock value is pushed low enough. Should Apple sit on the cash until someone else uses it?

          1. How exactly can anyone else use Apple’s $140B??? Even if AAPL sinks to $80 per share (virtual impossibility, as the inherent value of all that cash is over $140 per share), nobody but the board can make any significant decisions regarding Apple’s assets.

            What Apple has to do is continue innovation and growth. If they do, it is simply not possible for the stock to continue sinking.

            Apple back-stopping the stock artificially is fundamentally wrong. Even those who were still sure that Apple was a great growth stock with plenty of promise would immediately begin to doubt their thinking, when even Apple no longer thinks so (and has to resort to artificially arresting the fall of their stock by buying it back).

      3. Seriously Jersey_Trader. The last thing Apple needs to do is bend over and accept this blatant screw job from the gang of manipulators on Wall Street. Those dicks can all get FSCKed.

        All Apple has to do is remain consistently creative. I don’t see any danger of that ending. If Apple started kowtowing to Wall Street, THEN I’d get good and worried. You should too.

        The fact is the Wall Street know damned well that there is no greater company going than Apple. They’re all having their little hissy fits because Apple would become a BizTard company like the run-of-the-mill clowns who threw the world into our ongoing economic depression.

        Another way to put it: If everyone but you caught pneumonia, then the sick people get all ticked off because you’re well and they’re NOT, would it be prudent to throw up your hands and go lick pneumonia snot so you could be sick like everyone else? I THINK NOT. 😕

      4. Sounds like a good approach. If the price continues to fall, they just get more shares for the money. They can stop any time it stabilizes.

        The only difficulty is that a substantial part of the $140B resides overseas or in other investments. Might cost a bit to free that up as available cash. Still, your plan only costs $7B to implement the first week. Surely Apple can find that lying around somewhere. (Always hate it when “only” and “$7B” appear in the same sentence. Makes me sound like Washington, DC)

  1. 😉 I love finding these reports.
    Amazing how there are so many people that “know” their phones will soon need antivirus. I guess some people love Windows so much, they’re now willing to get much more intimate info stolen.

    People are dumb!

    1. If you would bother to read the article it has nothing to do with malware or iOS6 here is the info:

      Last week, a URL detection flaw discovered in OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion was publicized and gained attention for the ease with which users can cause almost any Mac application to crash. This can be accomplished by entering “file:///”, with an uppercase ‘F’, into a standard text input space.

      Doing this will cause a number of OS X applications, such as TextEdit, to automatically crash. The issue arises from the ability of OS X to detect that the user has input a URL.

      Apple’s Advanced Technology Group invented “data detectors” in the mid-1990s. The feature fist appeared in the Mac operating system, and allowed the OS to recognized formatted data, like a phone number, within an unstructured document, enabling a user to take action upon the data recognized.

      While the bug is interesting because of the ease with which it causes an application to crash, the specific issue is unlikely to have much of an effect on users.

  2. The analysts and the tech media are serial BLIND regarding this nagging reality. If reported faithfully across the full media spectrum just imagine the impulse sales implications, market share and stock price – all in play. Dumb and Dumber works against Apple.

    Gee, what a surprise …

    1. Wait till Android~Gaagle Malware, self propagates xcross millions & millions of SamScum and other AssDroid Devices via 3G, 4G or LTE. It WILL happen. It’s only a matter of iTime. Sit tight AAPL investors. The best has yet to come. Be not afraid of the trite propaganda in the mainstream media empowered by The Corrupt U.S. Government, bribed by Gaagle’s one and only Eric T. Mole Shithead. They can only sweep the truth under the Wall Street rug for so long. Just ask Mikey!!!! 😉 He knows EVERYTHING!!!

        1. This is WHY not wat.

          A Bloomberg article paragraph.

          Kabam’s Carvalho credits Samsung’s Galaxy S III, with features matching the iPhone, for much of the surge in apps for Android. Developers can also release Android software more quickly because, unlike Apple, Google doesn’t review apps before including them in its store.

          Makes me all warm and Malware inside. We all know we can TRUST Gaagle and SamDung….. right?

  3. Besides laughing away at the Wide-Open-Weed-Hole that is the Android platform, I noticed this link in the source article:

    Broad Powers Seen for Obama in Cyberstrikes

    Here come The Cyber Warz, with techno-ignoranti on the trigger buttons. Expect havoc and hilarity; Government vs government; Clown vs clown. No doubt innocent bystanders will suffer the most, while the techno-ignoranti pat each other on the back.

    Oh, and don’t forget the added machinations of our brain dead Corporate Oligarchy, who will demand their own hand in the mayhem. 😯

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