Cybercrims Target Oz Android Users: Ransomware At 25pc
According to Bitdefender, the increase is due to cyber crooks targeting Australians to generate revenue. The success of ransomware such as Cryptowall, which caused US$18 million worth of losses in 2014, has inspired malware coders to explore new ways of infecting more victims by creating ransomware for Android devices.
“With Android shipments exceeding 1 billion devices in 2014, it is little wonder the market is sparking the interest of cybercriminals who see it as an environment equally as profitable as PCs,” Bitdefender e-threat analyst Bogdan Botezatu said.
“We’ve been seeing Android ransomware samples for the better part of a year now. They were mostly designed to scare users into thinking they’re infected by displaying an easily-removable pop-up that contained the same message as PC ransomware.”
He said users only need limited technical knowledge to remove the pop-up and application from their smartphone.
However, new examples of the Android ransomware can block a smartphone’s keys so the user has to shut down their device.
According to Botezatu, the ransomware is spread through third-party marketplaces.
“If you get infected, we strongly recommend not paying the ransom, as that only fuels the cyber-criminal activity. Make sure you always have a mobile security solution installed, as it will detect and report any attempt of inadvertent download or installation of malware,” he said.