Android users could be spied on with dangerous new ‘ALIEN PREDATOR’ virus, Google warns

Android users are at risk of installing a dangerous new spyware called ALIEN, which can load a ‘PREDATOR’ virus that hijacks their device.

Google’s Threat Analysis Group has said that Android devices around the world are being targeted by the spyware, which they alleged was developed by a company called Cytrox in North Macedonia.

The virus sneaks its way into emails and can then record audio, hide apps, and more.

Victims are receiving email messages with dodgy links. If one of these fake URLs are clicked, it will redirect you to a website that installs an Android virus called ALIEN.



Google says Android devices have been targeted by the malicious software

This then loads something called ‘PREDATOR’ onto your device which can be used to spy on your device by criminals and governments.

In a report, Google assessed three ‘campaigns’ in which the spyware was used to target people, and claimed the tool has been used by government-backed actors in Egypt, Armenia, Greece, Madagascar, Ivory Coast, Serbia, Spain and Indonesia.

The tech giant said: “All three [spyware] campaigns delivered one-time links mimicking URL shortener services to the targeted Android users via email.



Thankfully the ALIEN and PREDATOR viruses are not as lethal as the sci-fi baddies - but they could still be a huge pain
Thankfully the ALIEN and PREDATOR viruses are not as lethal as the sci-fi baddies – but they could still be a huge pain

“The campaigns were limited — in each case, we assess the number of targets was in the tens of users. Once clicked, the link redirected the target to an attacker-owned domain that delivered the exploits before redirecting the browser to a legitimate website. “

Thankfully, Google says it has patched vulnerabilities in Google Chrome and Android to help prevent this virus from targeting more people.

If you want to ensure you have up-to-date security protection, make sure you regularly install software updates on your Android smartphone whenever you get the chance. You can do this at any time through the Settings app on your device.

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