Comment: New Android Bug Lets Malware Pose As Real Apps And Steal User Data

It has been reported that security researchers have found a major vulnerability in almost every version of Android, which lets malware imitate legitimate apps to steal app passwords and other sensitive data. The vulnerability, dubbed Strandhogg 2.0 (named after the Norse term for a hostile takeover) affects all devices running Android 9.0 and earlier. It’s the “evil twin” to an earlier bug of the same name, according to Norwegian security firm Promon, which discovered both vulnerabilities six months apart. Strandhogg 2.0 works by tricking a victim into thinking they’re entering their passwords on a legitimate app while instead interacting with a malicious overlay. Strandhogg 2.0 can also hijack other app permissions to siphon off sensitive user data, like contacts, photos, and track a victim’s real-time location.

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Boris Cipot
Boris Cipot , Senior Sales Engineer
InfoSec Expert
May 26, 2020 6:41 pm

It’s promising to see that Google has reacted so quickly here, implementing a system through which to screen applications for unwanted behavior and then blocking apps attempting to exploit this vulnerability.

It’s worth noting that Strandhogg 2.0 is dangerous for two reasons: the way in which it ends up on your mobile device and the way in which it harvests rights and access data. The malware can be installed by so-called “dropper apps,” also known as hostile downloaders, that are distributed through Google Play.

Android device users need to be cautious of the apps they choose to install. Even as Google works to protect their users, malicious apps will still likely slide past their screening process on occasion. One way that users can stay alert and mindful is to do a bit of research on the app developers before downloading a given app. Check where the app comes from and if anything seems off, then think twice before proceeding with installation.

Last edited 2 years ago by Boris Cipot
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