There are malicious actors and applications out there looking to take advantage of the fear and panic surrounding the coronavirus so they can get their hands on your bitcoin stash. The latest tool for this is a new coronavirus app for Android phones.
New Coronavirus App Is Deadly
The widespread panic has produced several products that seek to take advantage of what’s going on. Last week, Live Bitcoin News reported on the new Coronacoin that allowed users to bet on the number of deaths and virus cases they though would potentially appear in the coming weeks. At the end of the day, however, as repulsive as something like this might sound, it’s not a tool designed to steal money.
This new Android app, however, is. Hackers have developed a new application that users can download through stores like Apple and Google, both of which have been rather strict about COVID-19 applications coming from specific sources. Malicious actors and cyberthieves are still managing to find loopholes and ways around these companies and their operational regulations, however.
The latest tool was noticed by security researchers from a firm called Domain Tools, which states that one application under the name coronavirusapp.site allegedly offers users real-time information and tracking when it comes to coronavirus news and updates. In truth, it’s a ransomware platform known as Covid Lock hiding behind the façade of coronavirus tracking software.
The application allegedly offers false information and once downloaded, requests login information from a user, claiming it’s necessary to provide them with the latest updates and notifications. In truth, once these logins are given, the ransomware digs its way deep into the phone and ultimately locks the screen, preventing the user from seeing or accessing any of their accounts, apps or other data systems.
From here, the application reveals itself to be ransomware and requests that the victimized user pay as much as $100 in BTC to get their phone unlocked. The ransomware also states that all their data and applications will be deleted granted the person fails to provide payment within two days.
Keep Yourself Protected
The positive news, according to Domain Tools, is that this kind of attack is considered outdated, and companies like Google seemingly provide protection to all individuals who are hit by this kind of malicious behavior. Domain Tools has issued a statement explaining:
Since Android Nougat has rolled out, there is protection in place for this type of attack. However, it only works if you have set a password. If you haven’t set a password on your phone to unlock the screen, you’re still vulnerable to the Covid Lock ransomware.
The company has since stated that it is looking to provide users with a decryption key in the coming weeks to prevent people from having to pay the ransom.