Android Flubot virus now spreads via fake security updates

The Flubot malware has switched to a new and likely more effective lure to compromise Android devices, now trying to trick its victims into infecting themselves with the help of fake security updates warning them of Flubot infections.

“Your device is infected with the FluBot® malware. Android has detected that your device has been infected,” the new Flubot installation page says. The Week in Ransomware – October 1st 2021 – “This was preventable” “FluBot is an Android spyware that aims to steal financial login and password data from your device. You must install an Android security update to remove FluBot.”

As New Zealand’s computer emergency response team (CERT NZ) warned earlier today, the message on Flubot’s new installation page is only a lure designed to instill a sense of urgency and pushing potential targets to install malicious apps.

Potential victims are also instructed to enable the installation of unknown apps if they’re warned that the malicious app cannot be installed on their device. “If you are seeing this page, it does not mean you are infected with Flubot however if you follow the false instructions from this page, it WILL infect your device,” CERT NZ explained.

This banking malware (also known as Cabassous and Fedex Banker) has been active since late 2020, and has been used to steal banking credentials, payment information, text messages, and contacts from compromised devices.

The SMS messages used to redirect targets to this installation page are about pending or missed parcel deliveries or stolen photos uploaded online.

Until now, Flubot spread to other Android phones by spamming text messages to contacts stolen from already infected devices and instructing the targets to install malware-ridden apps in the form of APKs delivered via attacker-controlled servers.

Once deployed via SMS and phishing, the malware will try to trick the victims into giving additional permissions on the phone and grant access to the Android Accessibility service, which allows it to hide and execute malicious tasks in the background.

Flubot will effectively take over the infected device, gaining access to the victims’ payment and banking info in the process via…