Beware of “doubtful” apps: Alien virus can empty android smartphone users’ bank accounts

Alien-virus-empty-android

A new “Alien” virus can steal the passwords of 226 Android apps, reveals the zdnet.com site specializing in new technologies. This Trojan horse derived from the old Cerberus malware targets banking applications in particular, but Alien can also install a backdoor on the smartphones it infects, in order to have total control. It is able to intercept notifications, including the famous SMS messages that contain authentication codes.

Threat Fabric security researchers have discovered and analyzed a new strain of Android malware that has a wide range of features that allow it to steal identifiers from 226 applications.

Called Alien, this new Trojan horse has been active since the beginning of the year and has been proposed as Malware-as-a-Service (MaaS) on hacking forums. ThreatFabric researchers thoroughly analyzed forum messages and Alien samples to understand the evolution, tricks and characteristics of the malware.

Cerberus 2.0

According to them, Cerberus disappeared because Google’s security team found a way to detect and clean infected devices. But even though Alien was based on an older version of Cerberus, Alien doesn’t seem to have this problem, and his MaaS stepped in to fill the void left by cerberus’ demise.

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And the researchers say Alien is even more advanced than Cerberus, a reputed and dangerous Trojan horse in its own right. According to them, alien can not only display fake login screens and collect passwords for various applications and services, but it can also allow hackers to access devices to use this credentials or even perform other actions.

If you’re using an Android smartphone, think twice before installing apps that might look questionable.

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