Check Point researchers have uncovered a new type of virus that infects Android smartphones: here's how it works and how to defend yourself
At the beginning of the year, Google assured that in recent months it had done a great job to improve the security of the Play Store, eliminating almost 800,000 infected apps and tightening the rules for publishing apps. After a period of apparent calm, Check Point's developers are back with some bad news: 56 dangerous apps have been found in the Google Play Store, hiding a new type of virus that can infect millions of smartphones.
The name of the new virus is Tekya and it's a particular type of malware that automatically generates clicks. What is the behavior of this virus? Once it takes control of the smartphone, it starts clicking on advertisements without the user doing anything. In this way, the hackers make money from each click, collecting a few cents each time. A few cents that, however, at the end of the day turn into thousands of euros. The virus, in fact, has been found in applications downloaded more than a million times.
Another factor to take into account is the type of applications in which the Tekya malware is present: almost half of them are apps for children, who are not able to understand if they have in front of them a dangerous application that shows advertisements in a fraudulent way.
What Tekya virus is and how it works
For the Android world Tekya is a new generation malware, but already in the past the green robot operating system has been acquainted with very similar and equally harmful viruses. Tekya is a very peculiar malware: its operation is very similar to adware, viruses that display fraudulent advertisements, but it differs in nature.
Tekya virus takes advantage of MotionEvent, a feature of the Android operating system that allows the smartphone to remember the user's finger movement on the screen and generate clicks. Clicks that Tekya directs towards banner ads from agencies such as AdMob, AppLovin', Facebook, Unity and Google. In this way, the hackers carry out a real advertising fraud against agencies and users.
Tekya virus, what are the 56 dangerous Android apps
One of the most worrying factors is the nature of the apps infected by Tekya. As many as 24 are apps dedicated to younger kids, such as video games and learning apps. The remaining 32 apps, on the other hand, are mostly utilities such as translator, calculator and cooking apps. Check Point non ha rilasciato una lista con i nomi precisi dell’app, ma solamente il nome con il pacchetto dell’applicazione presente sul Google Play Store. Nonostante non ci sia il nome esatto dell’app, ecco una lista da cui lo si può intuire.
Come difendersi dal virus Tekya
Sebbene si tratti di un malware completamente nuovo, il Google Play Protect, il sistema di protezione sviluppato dall’azienda di Mountain View per scovare le app pericolose nel proprio store online, ha dimostrato ancora una volta di avere molti problemi di affidabilità.
Come difendersi dal virus Tekya? I consigli e le precauzioni da prendere sono sempre gli stessi. First of all, you should install an antivirus, there are free ones that offer excellent protection from malware and keep your smartphone safe. In addition, you should always install the latest security patches released by Google or your manufacturer. Finally, be very careful when installing new applications: check reviews and the reliability of the developer.