Almost 2 years since it was first detected, a software that eats up data on mobile phones and registers people for unwanted subscriptions has been found pre-installed on thousands of low-cost Chinese smartphones in Africa.
Given that these phones are pretty low cost, it means that the owners are low class people and having a software that eats up the little data they buy is unfortunate.
“The fact that the malware arrives pre-installed on handsets that are bought in their millions by typically low-income households tells you everything you need to know about what the industry is currently up against,” said Secure-D’s (an anti-fraud platform )managing director, Geoffrey Cleaves.
“This particular threat takes advantage of those most vulnerable,” he added.
The software has been identified as Triada Malware and has been found on Tecno W2 smartphones in countries such as Ethiopia, Ghana, Cameroon and South Africa.
The Triada malware signs mobile users up to subscription services without their permission. It installs a piece of code known as xHelper onto compromised devices, automatically subscribing users without their knowledge to services that consume pre-paid airtime.
Tecno Mobile said the problem was an old and solved mobile security issue globally for which it issued a fix in March 2018.