Stay Safe Online
Security advice for PC and mobile
Botnet malware infects millions of Android devices
A new strain of malware hidden inside apps on the Google Play store has infected close to two million Android devices over the past year, according to security experts monitoring the spread.
The recently discovered malware, known as ‘Falseguide’, has been found in more than 45 Google Play store apps that provide guides and walkthroughs for mobile games. Some of these apps have been installed 50,000 times, according to security researchers at Check Point, who first discovered the strain.
Once installed, the Falseguide malware is able to hijack a device and add it to a larger botnet. The device is then used to display pop-up ads containing malicious code, conduct DDOS attacks against other targets and even compromise private networks.
Check Point alerted Google to the infected apps in March, and they were removed from the Play store, but since then other apps laden with malware have been added, Check Point said. bit.ly/checkpoint423
Weak passwords are behind most security breaches
A new report has found that the majority of security breaches take advantage of simple passwords. Verizon’s annual Data Breach Investigations Report revealed that of the 2,000 breaches and security incidents it analysed, a whopping 81% used easily-guessed or stolen passwords. Furthermore, over 65% of malware infections were delivered via email attachments – a technique that has been around for decades. Pretexting – where a hacker pretends to be someone else to obtain private information – is also on the rise, while ransomware has increased by 50% compared to last year’s report.
Verizon revealed that organised crime gangs were behind more than half of all security breaches, while almost 70% of all threats to healthcare companies come from within and around 50% of attacks on educational institutions were perpetrated by state-affiliated hackers. bit.ly/databreach423