A gear icon has appeared on your phone, beware, it could be spyware

A Spanish cybersecurity company has identified spyware that can appear as an app on Android phones.

A small icon appeared on your Android phone? If you recently discovered an application that you did not know on your smartphone, whose icon represents the shape of a gear… Distrust. It could indeed be Russian spyware, alerted on Saturday 9 April the Spanish company Lab52specialized in cybersecurity, reports The Parisian.

How would this spyware work? He was actually hiding behind an application called Process Manager, that you accidentally installed by following a simple link.

Software that can access your data

If you activate this application, Lab52 indicates that you will be asked for a series of authorizations, a priori as for a classic application, but this time benefiting hackers and giving them access to your personal data.

As a screenshot shows, the software then runs in the background and only appears when opening the taskbar. It is therefore very easy to forget and during this time your data is sent to a server in Russia, the Parisian explains.



Origin of spyware uncertain

However, the exact origin of this spyware should be interpreted with caution, as IP addresses “can be bought on the black market and reused by someone else,” explains a cybersecurity expert. The context of the war in Ukraine raises suspicions about Russian intentions, but there could be a link with Turlaa group of Russian hackers funded by the regime, as Lab52 is progressing, however, underscoring its lack of certainty on the matter.

Otherwise, the hack actually installs an indian app on your phone that hackers earn money with every new download of the application, thanks to a sponsorship system.

In short, even if the exact targets of hackers are still unclear, the Process Manager application should be avoided. Do not forget to follow links whose origin you do not know and do not accept the terms and conditions of an application that you have not installed yourself and that is not certified.

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