So you’ve lost your phone and you’re understandably freaking out. All of your contacts were on there, personal info, photos, etc. Now you have no idea who has access to all that vital data and what they could be doing with it. Well, it turns out that same scenario could be playing out even if you HAVEN’T lost your phone.
A recent article in PCMAG.COM, “Fake Antivirus Holds Android Phones for Ransom,” really caught my attention and gave me a wake-up call. It described just one of a series of attacks targeting smartphones and tablets. Norton- Symantec researcher Joji Hamada explained how a program called “Android Defender” offers a free malware scan, tells you it has in fact detected something, and will remove it for you – for a price.
That’s where the trouble begins. See, “Android Defender” isn’t a real anti-virus app – it IS the virus itself! If you don’t pay up, it goes to work on your OS and completely takes over, preventing yu from deleting it and even from performing a factory reset. You either have to pay for the “full version” of their bogus software or you can’t launch any other apps. Basically, your phone is now being held for ransom. Scary.
This particular scam’s goal is to get your money, but there are plenty of similar ones out there geared toward hijacking your phone for the personal info that’s on it. And, if you think this kind of threat applies only to Android based phones, think again. Think the popularity of the iPhone has escaped the attention of the bad guys? No way, José.
All of your mobile devices are every bit as susceptible to attacks as your desktop or laptop. In fact, perhaps even more so, given that people usually are unaware that these types of attacks are targeting them when they’re on the move, so they’re less apt to have protection such as Norton™ Mobile Security installed.
Educate yourself with this video:
If after watching this you’re considering adding this to your line of defenses, you can save by busting out with a Norton discount when you do. But whatever you decide to do to keep yourself safe, do something and do it now or you’re taking a big, unnecessary, and completely preventable risk. And that’s just not a wise thing to do, is it?