Security researchers from Trend Micro detected a new variant of the popular AndroRAT Android RAT in the criminal ecosystem.
Security experts from Trend Micro reported the availability of a new variant of the popular AndroRAT.
The malware was first born in 2012 as a university project, designed as an open-source client/server application to offer remote control of a device. Unfortunately, hackers noticed the capabilities of the threat and started using it.
The new version includes the code to trigger the CVE-2015-1805, it is a local elevation of privilege flaw that affects the kernel of the Android OS of certain devices.
The vulnerability is ranked as critical and can be exploited by rooting applications that users have installed on their devices to elevate privileges and run arbitrary code on the vulnerable device.
The security flaw is very old, it was discovered in the upstream Linux kernel years ago and fixed in April 2014. Unfortunately, the flaw was underestimated until last early 2016 when the C0RE Team reported to Google that it was possible to exploit it to target the Android OS.
All unpatched Android devices running OS based on kernel versions 3.4, 3.10 and 3.14, including all Nexus devices are vulnerable to the CVE-2015-1805 vulnerability.
“Trend Micro detected a new variant of Android Remote Access Tool (AndroRAT) (identified as ANDROIDOS_ANDRORAT.HRXC) that has the ability to inject root exploits to perform malicious tasks such as silent installation, shell command execution, WiFi password collection, and screen capture.” states the analysis published by Trend Micro.
The new AndroRAT variant masquerades as a utility app called TrashCleaner that is likely delivered from a malicious URL. Once launched, the TrashCleaner will prompt the user to install a Chinese-labeled calculator app, hide its icon from the device’s UI, and activates the RAT in the background.
The new variant included the following additional features:
Theft of mobile network information, storage capacity, rooted or not
Theft of list of installed applications
Theft of web browsing history from pre-installed browsers
Theft of calendar events
Upload files to victim device
Use front camera to capture high resolution photos
Delete and send forged SMS
Shell command execution
Theft of WiFi passwords
Enabling accessibility services for a key logger silently
Experts recommend downloading apps only from official stores and keeping updated the OS and the apps.
Pierluigi Paganini is member of the ENISA (European Union Agency for Network and Information Security) Threat Landscape Stakeholder Group and Cyber G7 Group, he is also a Security Evangelist, Security Analyst and Freelance Writer.
Editor-in-Chief at "Cyber Defense Magazine", Pierluigi is a cyber security expert with over 20 years experience in the field, he is Certified Ethical Hacker at EC Council in London. The passion for writing and a strong belief that security is founded on sharing and awareness led Pierluigi to find the security blog "Security Affairs" recently named a Top National Security Resource for US.
Pierluigi is a member of the "The Hacker News" team and he is a writer for some major publications in the field such as Cyber War Zone, ICTTF, Infosec Island, Infosec Institute, The Hacker News Magazine and for many other Security magazines.
Author of the Books "The Deep Dark Web" and “Digital Virtual Currency and Bitcoin”.