Cyber security researchers are warning that Skygofree malware can steal WhatsApp messages and record videos.
It has been reported that the malware called Skygofree is capable of deep espionage on any Android device and steal any type of information without raising suspicion.
The virus can record audio and video, access text messages, take pictures, obtain call records, geolocation data, and even give a 3rd party complete control over your phone.
— The Life Pile (@thelifepile) December 18, 2017
Even though it has been dubbed Skygofree it has nothing to do with the British telecom company Sky, and does not affiliate or affect their Sky Go online television service in anyway.
It has been described as “one of the most advanced mobile implants” by Kaspersky Lab, who said that it “includes a number of advanced features not seen in the wild before.”
One of the features is the ability to make use of an Android device’s Accessibility Service to get steal WhatsApp messages without hacking the app itself.
It hides commands as payloads which can grab information using other applications and waits for the targeted application to launch. Once the application is launched, the payload uses Accessibility Service to steal information directly from the screen.
Even though it requires the user’s permission to complete such a task, they can be obtained through deceptive permission requests.
— The Life Pile (@thelifepile) November 9, 2017
Skygofree has been active since 2014 and has attacked several people, all of whom were based in Italy.
It is believed that an Italian IT company specializing in cyber surveillance created the malware.
Take caution when you receive odd emails that include requests, even if they seem to be coming from a trusted company. If you’re ever unsure whether a request is legitimate or not, you could always refer back to the company for confirmation.