We’re just a few weeks into 2018 and we’re already knee-deep in bad cyber-security news. I feel like a late-night infomercial here, but wait! There’s more!

Researchers at Kaspersky Labs have discovered a piece of Android malware that sounds like something out of a James Bond movie. In fact, the name of the malware – Skygofree- kind of sounds like a spy movie.

android-malware

This malware can get into your phone’s GPS and track your location. It can also do things like turn on audio recording for your phone when you’re in a particular location. Spooky, eh?

This malware can also override your battery saving mode and add itself to the list of apps that always stay active.

Plus! It can control apps like Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, reading all of your messages. It can also intercept your SMS text messages and your phone calls.

Okay, this is sounding like an infomercial, but that’s not all it can do! Skygofree can connect your phone to a WiFi network controlled by the hackers, even if your phone is set not to connect to WiFi. This allows them to monitor all of your traffic and steal information like what websites you visited, your login and password, and your credit card numbers.

But that’s not all! It can take a picture of you when you unlock your phone.

It appears that this malware was distributed under the guise of being an update that would speed up your phone. You know, one of those annoying fake update pop-ups. They aren’t just for PCs anymore, folks. I told you earlier this week about a Mac malware that was distributed the same way.

How do you stay safe?  Remember our basic rules to be vigilant and only get apps from the app store for your device and to be very careful about clicking on pop-ups and links.

Most importantly, make sure you have a security app on your phone. You’ll find lots of them in the Google Play Store, plus many security services like Norton include mobile devices in your license.