Fake Japanese app steals 10m pieces of personal info

Scammers dupe Android users with free video download

A group of Japanese app developers could face up to three years imprisonment after being arrested over a smartphone virus scam.
Initial reports said that about 90,000 smartphones were infected by the virus which extracted personal information stored on users’ handsets.The apps, marketed to unsuspecting customers as a download called ‘The Movie’, ostensibly offered a free video facility for Android smartphones and were advertised via popular games titles.

They were also offered on Google’s official apps store around March this year where, according to the reports, some 270,000 copies were downloaded.

It’s claimed the culprits, who worked together for an IT company, used the embedded virus to steal more than 10 million pieces of personal information from users which were then stored on a server.

Police have yet to established a motive for the crime. But under Japanese law violators can be punished by up to three years jail or face fines of up to half a million yen.

Developing malware for computers and smartphones is a criminal offence under the country’s laws, as amended in July 2011.

About Dave Evans

Dave Evans was a long established commentator on both the IT and cellular industries. His last focus was on share price trends within the sector. He passed away in September [2014].
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