Android Smartphone Shipped With Spyware, Embedded In Firmware By Chinese Manufacturer

You knew this was coming and why bother competing for snooping data like the western agencies do when you can just have the phone do it for you and be ahead of the snoopers. Blackberry and Apple are still the most secure phones with Blackberry have the edge. But then, with over 2000 patents in security, one expects this.

Image: G Data

Ideas, Inventions And Innovations
By Alton Parrish
21 June 2014

G Data discovers dangerous computer malware in firmware of android device and it cannot be removed.

For the first time ever, the experts at the German security vendor have discovered a smartphone that comes with extensive spyware straight from the factory. The malware is disguised as the Google Play Store and is part of the pre-installed Android apps. The spyware runs in the background and cannot be detected by users.

Unbeknownst to the user, the smartphone sends personal data to a server located in China and is able to covertly install additional applications. This makes it possible to retrieve personal data, intercept calls and online banking data, read emails and text messages or control the camera and microphone remotely.

The affected model "N9500" is produced by the Chinese manufacturer Star and looks very similar to a smartphone from a well-known manufacturer. It is not possible to remove the manipulated app and the spyware since they are integrated into the firmware. Large online retailers are still selling the Android device at prices ranging from 130 to 165 euros and distributing it across Europe.

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