We’re well used to scaremongering from security chaps who conveniently offer peace-of-mind solutions for a small fee, but given that this latest malware outbreak appears to be specific to China, we’ll leave the salt to the side for now.
Symantec and Xuxian Jiang, a professor of computing science at North Carolina State University, have been dishing the dirt on the dastardly RootSmart.
As is often the case with these outbreaks, RootSmart piggybacks on seemingly legitimate apps downloaded from third party sources. To be fair to our Chinese friends, the official Android Market is blocked in China.
RootSmart initially lies dormant and masks itself as com.google.android.smart, waiting for an event – such as an outgoing call – before connecting to a server made of pure evil and downloading GingerBreak.
With GingerBreak, RootSmart gives itself increased privileges, and as such is able to start making premium rate calls and sending premium rate messages. Bad times. Symantec figures RootSmart is raking in anything from $1,600 to $9,000 daily.
On the plus side, according to Symantec, RootSmart is only active on two Chinese mobile networks, and in fact ignores infected devices outside the unfortunate two.
However, it’s probably best to leave that Sexy Chinese Strip Girls 5 app alone for now.