New Android Ransomware Locks Device Completely

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July 17th, 2014, 16:48 GMT · By



Warning message purporting to be from the FBI

Android users are a constant target for cybercrooks, who have released a new scareware with ransomware capabilities that locks the mobile phone completely.

The fresh piece poses as a legitimate app that can be downloaded from third-party Android software repositories, and asks for administrator privileges.

Once the elevated permissions are obtained, it automatically blocks the phone with a ransom message purporting to be from the FBI. Access to data or any function of the device is restricted, making it inoperable.

Researchers at Lookout security firm say that navigating to a different app is not possible because the malicious app, which they named ScarePakage, uses a Java TimerTask to kill any processes unrelated to the malware every ten milliseconds.

Moreover, the cybercriminals integrated a wave lock mechanism designed to instruct Android that the app needs to stay on, which prevents the phone from entering sleep mode.
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