The malware effects almost all Android versions but reports say that the majority of them have been the KitKat and Jelly Bean.
In layman’s terms, ‘HummingBad’ is a drive-by download malware that gets downloaded when you visit some set of websites. The virus affects the devices by two different methods.
1. Having a rooted device.
It is REALLY easy for the virus to affect a rooted device as the virus will just need root permissions in order to mess with the system files. So if your device is rooted you need to take care that you don’t grant root permissions to whatever comes to your screen.
2. Getting a fake system update:
It is much more dangerous to clicking on/installing a fake system update than having your phone rooted. You need to be clever and look out for fake system update notification that will seek full system permissions. This permission will give hackers everything they need in order to take the valuable information out and sell them to other companies. The best way to avoid such a case is to block home screen notifications from your browser.
These are the only two ways the malware seems to get into the device and the fix to the issue is to factory reset the device.
CheckPoint warns that the malware cannot only be used to generate fake ad revenue but also give a free hand to the hackers to sell the information inside them to other companies. To detect if a device is affected, the user can download various antivirus applications from the Google Play Store including Avast, AVG or Lookout. These apps listed above will only tell you if your device is affected. But what if you want to get rid of the virus? The only way to get rid of the malware is to factory reset the device.
The security firm says that this whole malware thing is spreading since February, 2016 and the device affected with the malware seem to be active for quite a few months. Sources say that the virus started going viral in May, 2016.
The people behind the virus are said to be a team (A team of 25 people) from Yingmob, a multi-million dollar ad agency from Beijing, China.
Android smartphone users in US, UK and Australia are also in the affected list. Stay safe!