Alarming Warning: Android Users Beware of Stealthy Spyware App

man's hand using android phone

Smart­phone users beware! Cyber­se­cu­ri­ty experts at Cyfir­ma have detect­ed a dan­ger­ous Android app mas­querad­ing as a secure mes­sag­ing app but is actu­al­ly steal­ing pri­vate What­sApp and mes­sages and spy­ing on users.

The mali­cious app, called “SafeChat”, posed as a secure chat alter­na­tive on the Google Play Store until it was recent­ly removed. How­ev­er, if you have already installed it, you will need to unin­stall it man­u­al­ly from your device to remove the spyware.

The stealthy spy­ware exhibits advanced capa­bil­i­ties, allow­ing threat actors to extract sen­si­tive data like text mes­sages, con­tacts, call logs, loca­tion and device infor­ma­tion with­out users real­iz­ing it.

The decep­tive app is believed to be the work of the noto­ri­ous Indi­an hack­ing group “Bahamut”, which has been active since 2017 tar­get­ing Android, iOS and Win­dows devices to steal users’ data from pop­u­lar mes­sag­ing apps.

Cyfir­ma warns that the Bahamut spy­ware gives oper­a­tors remote con­trol of infect­ed devices, allow­ing them to con­tin­u­ous­ly spy on users. The hack­ers’ motives remain unclear but­Cy­fir­ma sus­pects it may be work­ing on behalf of the Indi­an government.

While the mali­cious app main­ly tar­get­ed South Asian coun­tries, any­one around the world could have down­loaded it, putting mil­lions of Android users at high risk of being hacked and spied on.

If you have installed “SafeChat” or any apps of mys­te­ri­ous ori­gin, unin­stall them imme­di­ate­ly and be extra cau­tious about any apps request­ing inva­sive per­mis­sions or mas­querad­ing as “secure alter­na­tives”. Stay vig­i­lant and pro­tect your pri­va­cy — down­load apps only from trust­ed sources and think twice before installing unknown apps, no mat­ter how promis­ing they seem. Your per­son­al data and secu­ri­ty are too valu­able to risk on spy­ware in disguise.

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