FluBot Malware Attacks New Victims With Voicemail Trick: Over $10,000 Stolen From Android Users

FluBot Malware Attacks New Victims With Voicemail Trick: Over $10,000 Stolen From Android Users
The FluBot malware is a growing concern for many Android users. The Australian government recently issued a warning against the malware after thousands of its citizens received FluBot-infected texts and voicemails. Unfortunately, many users were still tricked into downloading the virus. Photo : Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The FluBot malware is a growing concern for many Android users. The Australian government recently issued a warning against the malware after thousands of its citizens received FluBot-infected texts and voicemails. Unfortunately, many users were still tricked into downloading the virus.

FluBot is a dangerous malware for a lot of different reasons. First, it would tempt users to download it through deceptive messages. Second, it would infect user device and steal their data. Using the data stolen, FluBot would access the victim's bank account and eventually steal their money.

According to Scamwatch, over 16,000 complaints were filed against FluBot, with 13 of them losing over $10,542. Australians specifically lost more than $30 million to scams in September, almost double the number compared to last year's cases.

New Android FluBot Voicemail Attack Strategy

According to news.com.au, FluBot first arrived in Australia on August 2. It is recognized as a scam text sent and spammed to masses. FluBot often entices users to download it with different strategies. There are three strategies recorded up to date.

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In the first report, FluBot impersonated courier services like Amazon, DHL, FedEX and the Royal Mail (in the U.K.). It would inform the target victim about an undelivered package and instruct them to download an app to reorganize its delivery.

On the second wave, FluBot used its own notorious reputation to scare users. It would show Android users a message saying, "Android has detected that your device has been infected... You must install an Android security update to remove FluBot."

More recently, FluBot used scam strategies with voicemail messages. Scamwatch_gov tweeted photos of this deceptive text. In the first picture, FluBot sent the message, "I want to send you a voice message on Zello! Tap to download." The second photo revealed the link address on the so-called iiNet app and its two-minute voicemail message.

On all three of these circumstances, downloading the app would automatically install FluBot and infect the Android device.

How to Remove FluBot Android

Delia Rickard, the deputy chair of Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), told news.com.au that "(FluBot) it's a very sophisticated scam and potentially very dangerous. It can compromise people's bank accounts."

FluBot also proved itself to be extremely difficult to remove. Rickard said there are only three ways to remove it. "Just getting rid of that app doesn't get rid of that problem," she warned.

First, users should contact an IT professional to wipe the virus from the device. Second, users could try downloading an antivirus software that should detect and get rid of FluBot. Lastly, if the two options fail, users could opt for a factory reset on their device.

When infected, Rickard warned victims not to open any of their accounts. Instead, they should contact IDCARE or call 1800 595 160.

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