10 million+ Androids have been infected by Malware

| Mobile / Apps

According to Check Point, a cybersecurity company, at least 10 million Android devices have been infected by malware called HummingBad.

HummingBad was first spotted back in February and was tracked back to a legitimate ad and tracking company in China called Yingmob. The company are also associated with the iOS malware Yispecter which was uncovered last year.

Recently, this malware appears to have been a lot more successful on Android and the apps created by Yingmob were installed on nearly 85 million mobile devices running Google’s operating system and around 10 million of those devices were found to be running malicious software that will display ads, generate illegitimate clicks, download fraudulent apps and of course, make money for the cybercriminals.

More importantly, HummingBad can also access private information stored on your smartphones and can spy on people’s mobile activates.

Although most of the damage done was in China and India, it is still important to know how to protect your devices.

How to protect yourself

Here are the steps you can take to protect yourself from these threats:

1. Don't root your Android device

Rooting is jailbreaking for Androids and HummingBad will scan your device to see if it has root access and will install infected apps silently without you knowing.

If you don’t have root access you can still be targeted by being tricked into installing software that is imitating a legitimate app but it is a lot more obvious to spot.

2. Don't allow installation from "Unknown Sources"

If you have an Android phone you will have the option to install software from “Unknown Sources” in the settings. Obviously this poses security vulnerabilities, so to be safe uncheck the “Unknown Sources” option.

3. Update the latest Android software

You should always update your smartphone’s software as soon as it is available. Don’t put it off for too long as it will include security fixes and improvements that will help to protect your phone. 

Luke Stanley