SMS phishing attacks hit mobile users

Powered by SC Magazine
 

Latest threat dubbed 'smishing'.

A security firm has warned that malware writers are attempting to fool mobile phone users with bogus text messages.

McAfee, which calls the process smishing (SMS phishing), has reported that users are receiving SMS messages with the following text: 

'We're confirming you've signed up for our dating service. You will be charged US$2/day unless you cancel your order: [web address removed].

"This phenomenon is yet another indicator that cellphones and mobile devices are becoming increasingly used by perpetrators of malware, viruses and scams," David Rayhawk, mobile threat researcher at McAfee, wrote on the company's Avert Labs blog. 

Rayhawk warned that unwitting users fearful of incurring premium rate phone charges may visit the website listed in the message.

On visiting the site, they are asked to download a program that purports to be a free antivirus application but is actually a trojan horse that turns their computer into a zombie PC that can be controlled remotely by a hacker.

Once part of a zombie network, the PC can be used to launch denial-of-service attacks or send spam messages.

The SMS attacks originated in Spain and the messages are sent free of charge through network operators' SMS gateways. The messages specifically target owners of Nokia's Symbian OS based Series 60 phones, according to McAfee. 

"Enterprises would be wise to keep a close eye on this issue and think about policies for securing their mobile devices ahead of time," said Rayhawk.

"They should begin to educate their employees about the potential risk now, rather than playing catch up when it hits them."

Copyright ©v3.co.uk


SMS phishing attacks hit mobile users
 
 
 
Top Stories
The CISO’s dilemma: Do you trust your partner’s partner?
[Blog post] How far down the chain do you check?
 
Microsoft confirms Australian Azure launch
Available from next week.
 
NBN Co names first 140 FTTN sites
National trial extended.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...
Latest articles on BIT Latest Articles from BIT
Do you direct debit customers? Read this
Oct 10, 2014
Authorities have been targeting direct debit practices with iiNet and Dodo receiving formal ...
Optus expands 4G coverage
Oct 10, 2014
If you rely on an Optus phone for work you might be interested to know that there are now 200 ...
Microsoft Office is now free for some charities
Oct 10, 2014
Microsoft has announced that eligible Australian non-profit organisations and charities can now ...
Vodafone lights up 4G in Adelaide
Oct 9, 2014
Live and work in Adelaide? Vodafone has switched on its 4G network in the city and suburbs.
Next year tradies will be able to take payments using ingogo
Oct 3, 2014
Ingogo is going to provide a card payment service for Xero users.
Latest Comments
Polls
In which area is your IT shop hiring the most staff?




   |   View results
IT security and risk
  25%
 
Sourcing and strategy
  12%
 
IT infrastructure (servers, storage, networking)
  22%
 
End user computing (desktops, mobiles, apps)
  14%
 
Software development
  27%
TOTAL VOTES: 277

Vote
Would your InfoSec team be prepared to share threat data with the Australian Government?

   |   View results
Yes
  61%
 
No
  39%
TOTAL VOTES: 96

Vote