Dangerous Android malware is spreading — beware of text message scam

Cybersecurity researchers have found a text message scam affecting Android smartphone users with nasty malware known as FluBot, and it’s reportedly spreading to various countries around the globe.

The Android phishing scam has already branched out across Europe earlier this year, originally targeting users in Spain and spreading to the UK, Germany, Hungary, Italy, and Poland. Now, reports indicate the nasty trojan malware is making its way to users in the US and Australia. 

According to cybersecurity company Proofpoint, hackers trick unsuspecting Android phone users by impersonating well-known delivery services such as FedEx or DHL and send SMS messages leading them to download a malicious app containing the FluBot malware. Text messages include “FEDEX Your package is arriving, track here” and another stating a delivery date and a link to “follow the journey.”

What’s worse, the app that contains the malware seems credible due to the threat actors using the official delivery service’s logo and believable APK files. If users download the app, they would still need to allow full access for the malware to work, including allowing notification access.

The FluBot malware can steal private information using display overlays, including credit card details and banking credentials, while also acting as an SMS spammer. As noted in the report, it also “sends the victim’s contact list and retrieves an SMS phishing message and number to continue its spread using the victim’s device.”

The phishing scam has seen a number of surges throughout the year, even after arrests made by Spanish authorities for those responsible for creating the FluBot malware. Cybersecurity news outlet Security Week states that the malware has successfully affected 7,000 victims in the UK in April, and affected more than 60,000 devices in Spain back in March. 

Recent FluBot malware activity

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