Visiting certain websites, such as pornography or streaming services, may also trigger its installation. Once installed, the ransomware hijacks your device and locks it. At this point, it will demand payment to restore the device, often masquerading as national law enforcement to scare you.
Within Australia the virus may present itself as the AFP, State Police, or your state transport department, claiming you owe unpaid fines that you must pay to unlock your device. It may also accuse you of storing and viewing banned pornographic material that you must pay to have removed from your device. This form of the virus is known as the Police Virus, but it is important to note that authorities will never use screen lockers to collect fines from you.
It can be difficult to detect this form of ransomware since it is usually installed without your knowledge. It is not until the app locks the phone and demands a ransom that you may even be aware that there is a virus on your phone.
The answer is to detect suspicious URLs and apps prior to executing the malware. This can be achieved by ensuring your settings are set to ‘verify apps’ with the user prior to installation, and to avoid any suspicious links whose origins you aren’t sure of.
There are a few steps you can take to make sure that your phone stays virus free
If you have been infected with this virus, you can do the following to unlock your Android phone and minimise damage:
Disclaimer © 2018 Copyright Identity Care Australia & New Zealand Ltd. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this FACT SHEET, IDCARE disclaims any liability to any person in respect to any actions performed or not performed as a result of the contents of the alert or any accompanying data provided. Note our service is free to the community and our Counsellors will never ask you to provide your personal information and credentials if we make contact with you.
Ransomware targeting mobile phones is an emerging trend internationally.view fact sheet
Criminals attempt to gain ownership of mobile numbers in order to access online accounts.view fact sheet
iPhones are commonly viewed as being more secure than Android devices.view fact sheet