October 12, 2018
The cybersecurity company Avast identified an “adware” preinstalled in the “firmware” of about 100 current models of low-end Android smartphones. The malicious code distributes advertisements through the browser and is installed during the assembly line of the devices. The affected phones belong to manufacturers such as ZTE, Archos, Prestigio and myPhone, and in all cases they are low-cost terminals that are not certified by Google.
The “adware” is known under the name Cosiloon, and it is present in the “firmware” that the devices incorporate from the factory and is usually installed on MediaTek processors, affecting Android users between versions 4.2 and 6.0. The software displays advertisements on the web pages that users visit from the browser. This virus manages to install itself during the assembly line of the telephones, although at the moment it is unknown how. It is part of the manufacturer’s “firmware” and cannot be removed by the user later, at least not by conventional means.
Cosiloon, which has been active for at least three years, has been detected in 18,000 mobile devices with Android operating system in the last month, in a total of more than 90 countries including Russia, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. United, according to figures from Avast.
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