China may be the source for a lot of international cyber attacks and malware, but they get hit by it too. 620,000 Android phones in China were infected with a nasty virus that takes over the phone, collects personal information from it and begins to send costly text messages to benefit the malware maker.
Yesterday, security research company NQ Mobile created a press release about the discovery of the Android malware they dubbed “Bill Shocker”. Based on their findings they claim, “Bill Shocker is an SDK designed by malware developers that infects several of the most popular apps in China, including Tencent QQ Messenger and Sohu News.”
Bill Shocker then downloads itself in the background and takes over control of the phone, including dialing and texting features. And “Once the malware has turned the phone into a “zombie,” the infection uses the device to send text message to the profit of advertisers. In many cases, the threat will overrun the user’s bundling quota, which subjects the user to additional charges,” the report says.
The malware could affect phones outside China and has the potential to be the most costly malware in history, according to NQ.
So what can you do to keep your phone safe? NQ offers several tips to avoid infection including:
- Only download apps from trusted sources
- Never accept application requests from unknown sources
- Closely monitor permissions requested by any application
- And be alert for abnormal behavior from your smart device
NQ Mobile also offers a mobile device security solution that is already protects against threats like Bill Shocker.
With mobile malware becoming more prevalent, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is really starting to increase the attack surface of corporate networks. Companies really need to take a good look at their Mobile user security policy if they haven’t done so already.