A New Malware Xafecopy Trojan Steals Money Via Mobile Phones

New Malware Xafecopy Trojan Steals Money Through Victims' Smartphones: Report

New Malware Xafecopy Trojan Steals Money Through Victims' Smartphones: Report

Kaspersky Lab experts have disclosed a mobile malware targeting the WAP billing payment method, stealing money through victim's mobile accounts without their knowledge- report stated.

"Xafecopy hit more than 4,800 users in 47 countries within the space of a month, with 37.5 percent of the attacks detected and blocked by Kaspersky Lab products targeting India, followed by Russia, Turkey, and Mexico", the report noted. Other large groups of victims are in Mexico, Turkey and Russian Federation.

The malware has also been detected with different modifications, such as the ability to text messages from a mobile device to premium-rate phone numbers, and to delete incoming text messages to hide alerts from mobile network operators about stolen money - Kaspersky Lab Senior Malware Analyst Roman Unuchek said.

Under WAP billing, the services are charged to the user's mobile phone bill, thereby bypassing credit and debit cards or mobile wallets. The malware secretly loads some malicious codes onto the smartphones of the users. The user's money is then stolen by charging costs directly to their phone bill.

Around 40 per cent of targets of the malware have been detected in India. "Cyber-criminals do not even really have to teach their malware creations to gain the access they need for sending SMS messages; these Trojans are capable of staying under the radar and not asking for any special permissions such as access to Accessibility features". "Our research suggests WAP billing attacks are on the rise".

Kaspersky has warned that Android mobile users are more vulnerable to the Xafecopy malware, and advised those users to exercise caution while downloading mobile applications developed by unfamiliar developers. However, more and more services, especially under finance sector, are coming up under WAP eco-system, as the payment transfer is generally fast, and a user who has no bank account can also avail this service.

Kaspersky Lab, Managing Director- South Asia, Altaf Halde has specially issued a warning for Android users, as he said, "It is best not to trust third-party apps, and whatever apps users do download should be scanned locally with the Verify Apps utility".

Reports states, the malware is running with a function which disables the captcha code option (which is accepted to prove humanity) during billing payments.

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