Over 1 million Google accounts compromised by smartphone virus

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A smartphone virus has compromised more than 1 million Google accounts and although not technically a ‘hack’, people with Google accounts are being warned to stay on guard.

Experts claim that the software could attack up to 74 per cent of the world’s Android phones.

The malware has been nicknamed ‘Gooligan’ by Check Point, the computer security firm that discovered it. ‘Gooligan’ has already accessed more than 1.3 million Google accounts since August 2016, making it possibly the biggest breach of Google accounts on record. Attacks continue to grow at a rate of 13,000 breaches a day.

The malware enters devices after users download apps from third-party sites. It then accesses the user’s Google account to give fake reviews and rack up advertisement views. This then generates income for the malware makers.

According to Check Point: “The malware roots infected devices and steals authentication tokens that can be used to access data from Google Play, Gmail, Google Photos, Google Docs, G Suite, Google Drive, and more.”

The computer security firm has created a website where Google account holders and Android users can check whether their accounts have been compromised, along with instructions on how to battle the virus.

Any Android users running Android 4 or 5 operating systems are at risk of infection.

Google is currently working on a fix for the problem.

“We’ve taken many actions to protect our users and improve the security of the Android ecosystem overall,” said a Google spokesperson.

We caution YourLifeChoices’ members to only download Google apps from official sources.

Have you been hit by the ‘Gooligan’? Is your smartphone safe from malware?

Join YourLifeChoices today
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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?



Total Comments: 9
  1. 0

    I ran the link to “check whether your account has been compromised, and mine has not been compromised. But on that page there was a link to something called “scanguard” … it looked good and it was free, so I downloaded and installed it. I just want to say don’t bother with this, it’s a big con … you can scan, sure, and it comes up with all sorts of “threats” most of which on my computer were not threats at all, but you cannot actually do anything about any of them unless you buy the paid version. I’m quite annoyed with Your Life Choices for including this big scam – I suggest everyone sticks to known, high quality scanners such as AVG or Avast.

    • 0

      I should point out that the “threats” found were just about all cookies. There were also left over temp files from such items as updates, which I would have been happy to delete but of course in order to do anything functional I’d have had to buy their scanner! No way! I uninstalled the useless program 🙂

  2. 0

    I also downloaded scanguard and went ahead an bought the product – still a waste of time …AND I was also hit a day later by fraudulent use of the credit card used to pay for this software – football tickets in Spain and use of an escort agency in Spain???? The bank cancelled my card immediately and I chopped up the physical card….but likewise, not impressed the link to the software came through this site and I won’t even check this latest one even though I am an android 4 user….

  3. 0

    Ah! You have to love the new phone technology!! I’ve had a gutful and went back to my old Samsung of 8 years ago. People phone me and I can phone them plus send and reply to text messages. No more bullshit for me! Remember the old K.I.S.S Principle?? I even go out and DON”T take my phone with me!!!! WOW!!

  4. 0

    My wife & I both have the dedicated phones we bought while living in HK in 2003. They still function fine and cost us $10p.m. each to run on a pre-paid scheme. For smart technology I use an iPod that’s only wifi and download from App Store only. No virus problems here.

  5. 0

    Shame on YourLifeChoices if the comments below are correct and I have no reason not to think they are correct. Surely YourLifeChoices need to address this ASAP and publicly either confirm or deny this. If it is correct, the comments that is, then an apology is in order together with an explanation as this raises very serious doubts about YourLifeChoice’s credibility.

  6. 0

    and while we on here discussing technology, let it be known, that Lifes choices made more boo’s boo’s. at one time they had said we could click on a link and from there we would be able to download music, free. OH hell free be buggered, i got nothing but trauma, and then me computer wouldn’t run properly and i had to reload some of my programs just to get back on the internet. YEH thanks i think that not happen again any time too soon???

  7. 0

    I found Taboola which list extra links at the bottom of the e-mail to be a problem for scams and fishing exploits. Best thing is to keep away from these no matter how enticing the click bait appears. Was on the verge of dumping Life Choices entirely but instead just ignored those links.



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