The software company Check Point warns of a new virus in WhatsApp, which is said to have infected more than 25 million devices worldwide. "Agent Smith" exchanges popular 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, according to some reports also users in Australia, Great Britain and the USA - there have been no incidents in this country so far.
Smartphones are ubiquitous. Mobile devices are also used daily by game fans, so the warnings from the Israeli software company also affect gamers around the world. The harmful virus has wormed its way onto millions of Android devices worldwide. According to the software company Check Point, "Agent Smith", the name is based on the agent from the Matrix film trilogy, has hitherto primarily struck in the Asian region, partly also in Australia, the USA and Great Britain. The reason: The "host", i.e. the app that injects the virus into the Android device, is mainly 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 spreading in this country cannot be ruled out. The virus is particularly insidious because it disguises itself as a normal app and thus finds its way onto the smartphone. The affected apps are usually free games or free tools that are distributed via app stores. According to Check Point, once "Agent Smith" is installed on the device, the malware scans the smartphone for common apps, such as WhatsApp.
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, such as 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 frequently 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.
Android or iOS: which is better?
Android and Apple's iOS are more than just operating systems - choosing an appropriate device is a kind of lifestyle decision.
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