How Do Android Banking Trojans Drain Bank Accounts and Steal Passwords?

How Do Android Banking Trojans Drain Bank Accounts

How Do Android Banking Trojans Drain Bank Accounts and Steal Passwords?

A covert cyber threat exists for the most widely used operating system globally, Android, which is not even a contestant, and it has the capability to deplete bank accounts in order to fund the illicit activities of cybercriminals.

These are “Android banking trojans,” and as per a report, an astounding 88,500 of them were detected in 2023 alone.

Despite the fact that the 2024 report concentrates extensively on the current state of corporate security, make no mistake: Banking Trojans for Android presents a significant risk to average consumers. Favorite hacking tools among cybercriminals who wish to automate the acquisition of online funds are impeccably camouflaged and difficult to detect when used routinely.

What are Android banking trojans?

Simple logic underpins Android banking trojans and all cyber trojans: Android banking trojans, equivalent to the legendary “Trojan Horse” that reportedly halted the city of Troy, masquerade as harmless, authentic mobile applications before revealing their more malicious intentions once installed on a device.

Android banking trojans secretly deliver a malevolent application that can be exploited by cybercriminals in the future, while posing as commonplace mobile applications such as fitness trackers, QR code scanners, or photography or productivity tools.

However, modern devices are not so flawed that downloading an erroneous mobile application could result in complete device control or the disclosure of all your private information, including email, social media, and banking credentials. In contrast, the complexity of Android banking trojans lies in the fact that, after installation, they present users with seemingly authentic permissions displays, requesting a variety of device accesses in the name of functionality enhancement.

Consider the banking trojan SharkBot, which Malwarebytes prevents. A famous report discovered this Android banking trojan masquerading as a file recovery application called “RecoverFiles” last year. “RecoverFiles” requested access to “photos, videos, music, and audio on this device,” in addition to additional permissions for file access, mapping and communicating with other applications, and Google Play payment transmission.

Such permissions are precisely what a malicious application requires to access your personally identifiable information and individual applications in order to pilfer passwords, usernames, and other sensitive data that ought to be kept private and secure.

However, the machinations of “RecoverFiles” are not yet complete.

The application is not solely an ingenious encapsulation for an Android banking trojan; it may also be regarded as a concealed encapsulation. After being successfully installed, the “RecoverFiles” application icon is no longer visible on the main screen of the device. Comparable to the functionalities of applications classified as stalkerware, this covert strategy enables the surveilment of an individual’s digital and physical activities without their consent.

However, within the context of Android banking trojan development, malicious actors have implemented considerably more nefarious strategies than mere camouflage.

Navigating Undetected

One potential drawback of the Trojan Horse strategy employed by the Ancient Greeks was its one-time effectiveness; in the event that Troy is not besieged on the initial attempt, it is highly probable that the city will impose stringent security measures on any subsequent large horse offerings.

The developers of Android banking trojans must circumvent Google’s comparable (and considerably more sophisticated) security measures. Given its status as the preeminent marketplace for Android applications, cybercriminals endeavor to distribute their malevolent apps through the Google Play store in order to attract the greatest number of victims. However, Google Play’s security measures prevent malware from being listed on a regular basis.

What then should a cybercriminal do?

In such cases, malicious actors create an application that appears to be harmless but, upon being installed on a device, executes a segment of code that downloads malware from a remote location on the internet. Recent cybercriminals infiltrated Google Play in this manner, potentially infecting over one hundred thousand users with the Anatsa banking trojan.

The most alarming aspect of this assault was that the malicious applications that managed to make it to the Google Play store reportedly performed as intended: the PDF reader was capable of reading PDFs, and the file manager was able to manage files. However, concealed within the coding of the applications, users were obtaining a set of directives that aimed to infect their devices with malware.

These malevolent products are occasionally referred to as “malware droppers” due to the fact that the applications “drop” malware onto a device later.

How To Stay Safe from Android Banking Trojans?

It’s not as easy to stay safe from Android banking trojans as, say, noticing spelling and grammar mistakes in a phishing email or not clicking on links in text messages from people you don’t know. However, Android banking Trojans are not impossible to stop, even though they are harder to spot with the naked eye.

However, practicing some simple precautionary exercises may lead to a healthy digital lifestyle that may become very fruitful to you in the long run.  Craw Security, the sister company of News4Hackers and the best penetration testing services provider in India and other reputed nations worldwide may become very worthy for helping you out.

What does it all mean for us?

Any Android banking trojan has a lot of complicated technology working inside to steal your money, which is a pretty easy goal.

All of the hiding, trickery, and running of secret code is part of a bigger attack chain. Android banking trojans steal your passwords and other personally identifiable information, which they then use to steal your money.

In this context, News4Hackers, the Best Cybersecurity Info, and News Portal, provides its authentic sister vertical — Craw Security on the job of offering world-class VAPT Solutions in India to all the needful persons and organizations that require quick solutions related to various vulnerabilities and glitches in their respective IT infrastructures.

You can give us a call at +91-9513805401 to book a slot with our highly experienced penetration testers at Craw Security.

About The Author:

Yogesh Naager is a content marketer who specializes in the cybersecurity and B2B space.  Besides writing for the News4Hackers blog, he’s also written for brands including CollegeDunia, Utsav Fashion, and NASSCOM.  Naager entered the field of content in an unusual way.  He began his career as an insurance sales executive, where he developed an interest in simplifying difficult concepts.  He also combines this interest with a love of narrative, which makes him a good writer in the cybersecurity field.  In the bottom line, he frequently writes for Craw Security.


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