When Ransomware Goes Mobile
In the past two years, the most significant trend in the malware world was the rise of ransomware. Recently, mobile malware followed the footsteps of PC malware, like it has done many times before, as several security vendors detected a sharp rise in the spread of mobile ransomware. According to ESET, ransomware has grown by over 50% over the past year, and Kaspersky notes a rise of 250% in the first quarter of 2017. Interestingly, both firms concur that most attacks target the USA, which correlates with the general trend of ransomware in PCs as well. To prevent ransomware from affecting our mobile devices, we must understand how it operates on this platform, and what are the unique dangers of mobile ransomware.
Playing in the big league – Mobile ransomware on Google Play
Mobile ransomware is likely to try and infiltrate Google Play, Google’s official app store to achieve wide distribution, which will increase the attackers’ profits accordingly. Even though it is harder for ransomware to bypass security protections due to its unmistakable malicious nature, Check Point researchers have already detected a new ransomware variant, called Charger, which managed to enter the Play store by using several obfuscation techniques. This might be an early bird of a much wider phenomenon to come.
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