When non-techies hear of viruses, the tiny microscopic organisms that cause HIV and AIDs will always pop into their brains. But, in the tech world, virus means a different thing altogether, sometimes we don’t use the word virus, we go all technical and call it malware.
With that aside.
You must have heard about different malware attacks on PCs, mobile phones, and so many other gadgets right? The most recent outbreak will be the WannaCry Ransomware which ravaged computers and servers all over the world.
These viruses will make your phones and PCs do what you didn’t ask them to do. I can remember a few years back when a malware, which the name started with the word “monkey” made my phone install and play games on its own every midnight. That was so annoying.
There are so many viruses roaming around these days, their existence has never been any lesser.
Just last week, it has been discovered by some researchers from AdGuard that some video streaming websites will hijack the CPU cycles of millions of visitors visiting their site to mine the cryptocurrency, monero.
Then, recently, Moscow based security researchers from Kaspersky Lab have discovered a new strain of Android virus which goes by the name, Dubbed Loapi.
This android virus hides itself in fake anti-virus and porn apps on your phone and it’s capable of causing a variety of nefarious activities on your phone. These activities range from mining cryptocurrencies to launching Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. Read this post to understand what DDoS means.
Among the numerous malicious activities Dubbed Loapi can cause on your phone, within just two days of infection, the strain and stress it will cause on your phone will leave your smartphone’s battery swollen and bulge out from its back cover. Now, this is bad and hilarious.
Researchers have described that Dubbed Loapi has a modular architecture that lets it conduct a variety of malicious activities at the same time. It will –
- Mine Monero Cryptocurrencies for its creators using your phone’s CPU power
- Launch DDoS attacks
- Bombard you with annoying ads
- Redirect web traffic
- Send out messages on its own
- Download and install apps on its own on your phone
That’s so much pain packed inside one virus right?
The most important malicious activity here is the cryptocurrency mining, Loapi uses your phone’s CPU to mine monero cryptocurrency so intensely that it puts a strain on your phone’s battery and destroys it within two days. This post here will tell you everything wrong with using a phone with a swollen battery, first of all, you risk explosion.
The cybercriminals behind loops are the same group behind a popular Android malware called podec. Podec wrecked many phones during its time.
They are distributing the malware through third-party app stores and via online advertisements that pose as the popular anti-virus apps that everybody knows about. This virus is currently impersonating at least 20 variations of legitimate antivirus software like AVG, Kaspersky lab, Norton, Avira, DR web and CM security.
Also, if you visit porn sites, you are also at risk of infection.
When installed by a victim, Loapi forces the user to grant it ‘device administrator permission’ just like every antivirus and the legitimate app would do. When you click yes, you have given the devil the same power as you do have on your phone, now, your smartphone is possessed.
Finally, one funniest and most interesting things about Loapi virus is that it aggressively fights any attempt you try to revoke the device manager permissions given to it. It does it by locking the screen when you try to do so or closing the phone’s window all by itself. To do this, Dubbed Loapi communicates with the module-specific command and android (C&C) servers.
When connected to the C&C server, Loapi sends out a list of legitimate antivirus apps (if you have any) and accuse these real and legitimate apps of being malware and urging the user to uninstall them by showing a disturbing pop up that keeps coming back until the user performs the task of uninstalling the anti-virus. This anti-virus is the only thing that can pose a threat to its existence in your phone’s system.
Finally, the virus cannot be found in any app on play store, so users who stick to play store are and download apps from the official app store are free from infection. Just stay alert and apply caution, don’t allow this virus kill your darling phone just yet.