The latest Android Vulnerability is the Kemoge Malware!
Android users beware; the Kemoge malware is on the prowl!
Yes, after the string of attacks meticulously carried out by the previous apps of its kind, Kemoge is now out and striking. This recently discovered vulnerability has already affected Android users across 40 countries so far and is quickly spreading over to other regions. Red parts in the below image denote the infected countries.
Once it affects a device, it starts flashing unwanted ads on the infected device and the eight root-exploits that the vulnerability is loaded with, holds potential to attack a wider range of Android device models.
As is the case with all other adware varieties, this malware too flashes un-safe ads on your device ranging from the ones with explicit images to the ones with abusive texts. It may also flash alert messages about your Android device being laden with malware to create panic.
How does the Kemoge malware work?
Before we seek to understand the modus operandi of this malware, it is important to take a note of the apps that are presently infected. So, the list includes Talking Tom 3, Shareit, Assistive Touch, WIFi Enhancer, Calculator, Kiss Browser, Light Browser and a few more. The malware designers have creatively infected these third-party apps by including a code in them and thereafter placing these apps in the Google Play Store; besides third-party locations that offer users easy download to Android apps. A user wanting to download these apps will take the infected ones to be legitimate and once he installs it on his Android device, the malware will come alive and start its nasty game of flashing ads, collecting device information, and sharing the data with its creators. To promote the infected apps, the designers also flash ads and download links across different web portals and in app-ad platforms. This makes these Kemoge-infected apps appear legitimate as they are promoted on authentic portals.
The vulnerability is also capable of uninstalling legitimate apps from the Android device and replacing them with malicious codes.
While the designers of the malware is yet unspecified, FireEye, the software research brand that discovered this vulnerability, suggests that this could be the handiwork of Chinese hackers.
How to remain safe from the Kemoge adware?
To remain safe of an online threat, you’ve got to be very careful of your online behavior and what you access while you are on the web. So, remember to not:
- Click on suspicious mails, ads or websites.
- Install apps from third-party sources; always go to legitimate places to do so.
- Leave your Android device outdated; install the latest updates to keep it secured.
- Use outdated Android version; upgrade your OS to the latest version to maintain safety.
- Practice any delay; the moment you find something amiss, uninstall the malicious app immediately.
FireEye researchers have accurately summed up the experience as "Initially Kemoge is just annoying, but it soon turns evil". So, beware of this evil that is waiting to victimize you; apply caution when you are on the web and re-check before downloading an app, especially if it is one of those mentioned in the list above.