The software company Check Point warns of a new virus on WhatsApp that is said to have infected more than 25 million devices worldwide. “Agent Smith” likes to swap used Android apps, including WhatsApp, for malware. The security experts of the Israeli company are sounding the alarm: So far, users in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan have been affected, and according to some reports, users in Australia, Great Britain and the USA have been affected - there have not yet been any incidents in this country.


Smartphones are ubiquitous. Mobile devices are also used by game fans on a daily basis, so the warnings from the Israeli software company also affect gamers around the world. The damaging virus has sneaked into Android devices millions of times around the world. “Agent Smith”, the name is based on the agent from the Matrix film trilogy, has so far primarily struck in Asia, according to information from the software company Check Point, partly also in Australia, the USA and Great Britain. The reason: The “host”, the app that infiltrates the virus into the Android device, is primarily available in Arabic, Russian, Indonesian and Indian.

German users are safe so far

German Android users have not yet been affected by “Agent Smith”, but distribution in this country is not excluded. The virus is particularly treacherous because it disguises itself as a normal app and thus finds its way onto the smartphone. Most of the time, the infected apps are free games or free tools that are distributed via app stores. Once “Agent Smith” is installed on the device, the malware searches the smartphone for popular apps, such as WhatsApp, according to Check Point.

The installed applications would then be replaced by the malicious program. As a result, those affected could then be financially harmed through advertising formats. Check Point also states that the virus can even eavesdrop on users or spy out bank details.

Protection against smartphone viruses is essential for users: Apps should only be downloaded from reliable sources, something from the official Google Play Store - even if offers on platforms such as “9Apps” are tempting. Virus-tested software has also been offered in the Play Store in the past, but third-party providers are more often affected.

Anti-virus programs that secure the smartphone against the installation of malware offer additional protection. Numerous free and paid protection programs are available, especially for Android devices. Important: Anti-virus programs should not overload the smartphone system too much.

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