Android: watch out for SMS Factory, this Trojan horse can blow up your bill!
Computer security researchers are warning users as a new malware that can drain your bank account. This Android Trojan, dubbed SMS Factory, can cause your phone bill to skyrocket. Here’s how.
Android users are regularly targeted by many threats. In May 2022 alone, there was no lack of examples. Microsoft, for example, has assured that millions of Android smartphones are at the mercy of hackers, the fault of numerous security flaws in popular Android apps.
In mid-May, it was Google’s turn to warn users against spyware capable of listening to all conversations. And in early May, a study showed that several cleaner apps were actually collecting all of your personal data.
Avast warns against SMS Factory
This time, we owe the alert of the day to the experts of Avast, the famous antivirus software. Researchers have discovered the existence of a Android Trojan particularly dangerous. They baptized him SMS Factorydue to its ability to send premium rate text messages and make calls to premium numbers.
According to Avast, this malware spreads via malicious advertisements, push notifications and alerts displayed on sites offering hacks for games, X content or even free video streaming sites. The malware hides in an application through which users can access the aforementioned content.
Only and once installed on the victim’s smartphone, SMS Factory erases all traces of its presence (no app icon on home screen and no app name in settings). In fact, it is very complicated for the victim to know the origin of these additional expenses on his telephone bill.
Up to €300 extra on the annual bill!
Indeed, the malware can increase the amount of your bill up to €6.5 per week or €313 per year! Note that another version of the malware in circulation may extract your contact list to spread faster. According to Avast, this malware is rampant worldwide, with cases listed in Russia, Brazil, Argentina, Turkey, Ukraine, France and Spain. To protect yourself from SMS Factory, Avast researchers offer several tips:
- Always use official app stores
- IInstall an antivirus on your smartphone
- Avoid downloading apps that are advertised through short videos and push notifications in your browser
- Disable or limit surcharged SMS with your operator
Note that this last measure is all the more important on children’s smartphones.