Android trojan

Welcome to the big time, Android users -- the first Android-specific trojan has been announced by Kaspersky Lab.  Don't sound the alarms and clang the bells just yet, as even with 200,000 activations a day this thing (so far) is as rare as an honest politician.  If you are unlucky enough to install it, the trojan will send premium SMS messages (as in the kind that add money to your monthly carrier bill) behind the scenes and without your knowledge or permission.  Like its Windows and iPhone counterparts, you won't find it in any reputable place like the Android Market, and will have to peruse the seedy side of the interwebz to run into it.  Yes, I'm talking about those so-called .apk black markets.  But since there's also a chance an innocent party could come across this one, rather than point and laugh, let's talk about how to prevent it.

Which brings us to side-loading and application permissions.  If you don't go for the conspiracy theories, AT&T is protecting you from this sort of thing by disabling sideloading.  Once you get a bit more comfortable with Android, we've re-enabled that for you, so even you AT&T subscribers need to pay attention to application permissions.  If you download a supposed video player (A 13kb video player?  That's a hint in itself) that needs access to your messaging program, and install it anyway you're just asking for trouble.

Of course you could download and install one of the Android anti-virus apps, that's your call.  In any case, be careful what you download, where you download it from, and for goodness sakes read the application permissions before you click away! [Kaspersky Lab]


Reader comments

Android trojan found in the wild


Maybe this will stop some people from downloading apps illegally and instead supporting developers. Yay Trojan Virus!

i just got this text saying it was sprint and to click a link to get a free trip.

i personally dont care about free anythings so i black listed the text which was from 4567

link posted was (minus the http: )

not sure if this is related but beaware none the less.

Wow, we've gone mainstream! I have Lookout and have no idea whether that provides real protection or not. Norton/Symantec, can you hear me? $5 for an app. and you have a totally new and robust revenue stream...

Maybe a Lookout user should download the app and install it and see if it stops it lol. Really I kinda wonder just what the anti-virus apps can do. Aren't they sandboxed like any other app? So how are they going to stop an app that you download and install.

I can't feel all to sorry for anybody that got this. I'm sure the app doesn't explain why it needs permissions to send SMS messages. I seriously believe both on Android and iPhone that there are a ton of people that literally go app for app down the market and download damn near everything they see. I believe this is one reason the sales are so high on the iPhone since they can't return the apps. I prefer to check out apps that are suggested via sites like AppBrain or from the very helpful Apps of the Day/Week (whichever it is) from sites like this one. When I browse the market I look for apps that have screenshots, look like they have put some work into the UI, have put some work into the icon and so forth. Its less likely that someone with malicious intent is going to waste time trying to beautify their apps. If your app has a professional look I may try it. I won't try anything else without a recommendation.

The text message from sprint is ok I talk to a rep it ok! You have to go sprint web page to register.

Wow finally we see the incredible on AC, one of the best phone ever like the nexus one, Dinc jewel collection without doubt.

You can also have your carrier block premium SMS's. I've never found a legitimate use for them, it's always people trying to charge you money for stupid stuff or for nothing.