‫ Microsoft engineer discovers Android spam botnet

ID: IRCNE2012071541
Date: 2012-07-07
According to "zdnet", Microsoft engineer Terry Zink has discovered Android devices are being used to send spam. He has identified an international Android botnet.
Android malware is on the rise. There have been many fake versions of Android apps that try to cash in by sending expensive SMS messages. This is different.
In this case, the money is being generated after spam e-mails are sent from Yahoo Mail servers on Android devices.
As such, Zink believes a cybercriminal has developed a new piece of malware that can access Yahoo Mail accounts on Android devices and send spam messages from them. Since this is happening on a large scale, it follows the perpetrator has also linked the Android devices together to create a spam botnet, a technique often used when trying to monetize spam; it's all about volume, volume, volume.
Most of these countries are in the developing world, and so the Microsoft engineer argues that users likely tried to download pirated versions of apps to avoid paying. Alternatively, they were tricked into downloading a fake version of the Yahoo Mail app. Either way, it's unlikely they used the official Google Play store.
Android lets you download and install apps from anywhere. Please only install apps from Google Play unless you are absolutely certain you know who wrote the software you want to install. Fighting malware isn't just the responsibility of security firms: you can help by being smart about what you install.


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