Fintech is on the rise and we can see that most banking transactions and financial services have become digitized. From opening a bank account to making payments of several kinds to even investing in several channels, you do not need to visit a physical bank branch. That’s because almost every banking service under the sun can be found on the bank’s app.
With technology easing up banking, it has also opened doorways to malicious attacks. Imagine you are conducting a transaction- sending large amounts of funds to a family member via your banking but, what you probably don’t know is that your transactions are being intercepted or worse, exploited. Sounds scary, isn’t it? What if we told you that it is a real-life scenario.
Before you drop your jaws wide open in surprise, read what has actually happened and we’ll also try and look at defense measures that can save you from being a soft target to threat actors.
What Has Happened?
Researchers have found a new Android malware that’s targeting the customers of Itaú Unibanco bank in Brazil. It poses like the bank’s original app probably because of which the customers are being driven into accessing the malware and thereby falling prey to it.
On a victim’s device, the malware mocks Google Play Store pages with the intent to carry out fraudulent transactions. More specifically, this malicious imposter application uses a name and icon similar to Itaú Unibanco’s app. The malicious actor has created a fake page on Google Play Store where it hosts the malware under the name sincronizador.apk that targets Itaú Unibanco and its customers.
So, what happens when a user installs this fraudulent app?
Once users install the app, they are prompted to enable accessibility services and provide other permissions to this app. With the help of these permissions, the malware is further able to steal content on the user’s device, get a grip of gestures such as swipe and tap, and even access notifications. The malware then uses the victim’s device to conduct fraudulent transactions without the victim having any idea of what happened, rendering the user clueless.
As per researchers, the eventual goal of this trojan is to exploit the legitimate Itaú Unibanco application’s accessibility API. With this, the trojan will then be able to tamper with a user’s input fields. Surprisingly the app claims to have more than 1.8 million downloads.
Google is also taking measures to shun such attempts and it has initiated new limitations that bar the use of aforesaid permissions which enable apps to capture a device’s sensitive information.
Has Such An Occurrence Prevailed In Brazil Before?
In April 2021, ESET observed a trojan named Janeleiro which struck corporate users in Brazil, and it spread its fangs across several sectors the likes of retail, healthcare, finance, engineering, government, and transportation.
How To Save Yourself From Fraudulent Banking Apps
It doesn’t matter from what walk of life you come from, but if you have an Android device, you need to keep your guard up against malicious threats. Do not think that just because this fraud has occurred in one part of the globe, it can’t happen to you. As a prudent banking customer who uses apps often to conduct transactions, here are some tips that’ll help you keep such malicious threats at bay –
1. Never click on spam emails that prompt you to download apps, documents such as bank statements, or for that matter perform any other action
2. Download banking apps and other finance-related apps only from verified sources such as Google Play Store or the bank’s website. Never trust an app link that you have received via text
3. Your bank details are personal and vulnerable, never share your bank details especially, your account details, internet banking passwords, ATM pin. debit/ credit card details, etc with someone. And, sharing such details on social media is a big no!
4. Exercise utmost caution when conducting transactions online on e-commerce shopping portals. Just because a deal is enticing might not mean it’s safe.
I Have Become A Victim Of A Banking Fraud, What Should I Do?
In such a scenario, don’t panic, collect yourself, and immediately contact your bank who might take certain actions to cease the fraudulent activities. For instance, they may freeze your account or inform the cybersecurity cells to combat such activities on your account.
As a further precautionary measure, you should have an anti-malware app on your Android device. One such app is Systweak Anti-Malware. At the outset, this app protects your Android smartphone from malicious files and several different kinds of malware, thanks to its frequent database updates that track and remove even the latest threats that may attack your Android device and not forget a powerful scanning engine.
Click Here To Install Systweak Anti-Malware
Why Should I Trust Systweak Anti-Malware?
- First, the app’s simple and its interface poses no issues
- Systweak Anti-Malware offers real-time protection against threats
- It keeps you prevented while you are surfing the world wide web and just in case, you accidentally stumble upon a malicious website
- It gives complete control over when you want to schedule the scan i.e. daily or weekly
While the app is simple to use, we have covered an in-depth guide on how you can use it to intensify your Android device’s protection.
Incidents like the above can happen to any Android user. But, that doesn’t mean nothing can be done about it. With the right and timely measures, you can easily thwart the malicious intentions of threat actors and in fact, use technology as a weapon to combat them. That being said, we hope you found value in the post. For more such content, keep reading Tweak Library.