Spam and malware attacks on mobile devices spike in 2015 as cybercriminals devised new tactics of defrauding unsuspecting victims, latest Kaspersky Lab Security Bulletin has revealed.
Cybercriminals continued to send out fake emails from mobile devices and notifications from mobile apps containing malware or advertising messages in 2015. They developed new tactics which include spreading malware in the form of .apk (Android executive files) and .jar (ZIP archives containing a programme in Java), according to Kaspersky.
In addition, they masked a mobile encryption Trojan behind a file containing updates for Flash Player. After launching, the malware encrypted images, documents and video files stored on the device with users receiving a message telling them to pay a fee in order to decrypt the files.
Daria Loseva, Spam Analysis Expert at Kaspersky Lab says “the increased use of mobile devices in our everyday life to exchange messages and data, as well as access and control bank accounts, has also resulted in increased exploitation opportunities for cybercriminals. Mobile malware and fraudulent spam is becoming more popular and efforts to dupe victims are becoming more sophisticated year on year, with the emergence of apps that can be used by cybercriminals both directly (for sending out spam, including malicious spam) and indirectly (via phishing emails).
In view of this, the Kaspersky Lab executive warned “mobile device users therefore need to be on their guard and remain vigilant, as cybercriminal activities in this area are only likely to increase, along with our reliance on devices.”