Technology and the world of smart devices evolve daily. However, parallel to the realm of technology designed for good, there’s a shadowy underbelly that continually grows too. Recent reports have made us question the security of Android devices once more, particularly concerning a threat known as the Guerrilla virus. Here are all the details…
How to Protect Your Android Device from the Guerrilla Virus
The security of Android devices has been a topic of debate for years. Google has indeed implemented measures to protect against system vulnerabilities, but there have never been genuinely effective steps taken concerning malicious third-party applications on the Google Play Store. This inevitably labels the security of Android devices as “dubious”. A report published last week has further inflamed this issue. It claimed that many Android devices are shipped to consumers with malicious software pre-installed, which has led Android users to regard their phones with suspicion.
The initial report came from cybersecurity firm Trend Micro. The company examined 50 different Android device models during their investigation. The findings were quite alarming. According to the report, 8.9 million Android devices were found to be infected with malicious software. The identity of the harmful software was also revealed.
Another cybersecurity firm, Sophos, named the identified application as Guerrilla. Like a detective, Sophos tracked the path of the Guerrilla app, and the resulting findings were equally disturbing. The reason being that Guerrilla was found within the infrastructure of 15 different applications in the Google Play Store.
What Guerrilla essentially does is simple. It opens a backdoor on your phone under the guise of an “update notification” within the application it’s housed. This allows unwanted harmful software to be downloaded onto your phone, presenting them as updates. The downloaded malicious software then affects aspects like your phone’s battery life, performance, or the advertisement content that appears.
Phones that contain Guerrilla generally exhibit low battery life and performance features. The advertisements that users encounter are often irrelevant to them and can be categorized as obscene content. The countries where virus-infected phones are most common currently include the United States, Mexico, Indonesia, Thailand, and Russia. As for the situation in Turkey, there’s no answer yet. No security company has named the brands or applications that house these harmful applications. The only known fact is that they frequently appear on mid-range and lower-range devices.