Skygofree: this new Android malware can do serious snooping

There are ways to protect yourself when using an Android Device, and in general, your phone will do the work to stay safe for you. But, some malware can try to trick you into installing it, and from there, all bets are off. A recently discovered bit of malware tries to do just that, and once its implanted on your device, it can do some serious spying.

Kaspersky Lab discovered the malware, which it named Skygofree, late last year, and has learned a lot about how it tries to get onto Android devices, and what it's capable of once implanted. Kaspersky Lab described it as "one of the most powerful spyware tools that we have ever seen for this platform."

Kaspersky Lab believes Skygofree has been in development since 2014, and has evolved considerably since then. It has a wide variety of spying capabilities, some of which haven't been seen before. 

The Skygofree malware can get onto users devices after they visit a fake website posing as another. An example Kaspersky Lab found was fake mobile operator web pages that tried to get users to install unofficial apps.

When Skygofree gets on an Android device, it can record audio using the microphone, connect to specific Wi-Fi networks to analyze traffic and capture pictures or video. The audio recording can even be triggered by specific locations.

To avoid infecting your device with Skygofree, double check the URLs of website to be sure they are official and correct, and be careful which apps you install, especially those outside of the Play Store.

via Ars Technica

Mark Knapp

Over the last several years, Mark has been tasked as a writer, an editor, and a manager, interacting with published content from all angles. He is intimately familiar with the editorial process from the inception of an article idea, through the iterative process, past publishing, and down the road into performance analysis.