In just 24 hours, 5,000 Android devices are conscripted into mining botnet
A fast-moving botnet that appeared over the weekend has already infected thousands of Android devices with potentially destructive malware that mines digital coins on behalf of the unknown attackers, researchers said.
The previously unseen malware driving the botnet has worm-like capabilities that allow it to spread with little or no user interaction required, researchers with Chinese security firm Netlab wrote in a blog post published Sunday. Once infected, Android phones and TV boxes scan networks for other devices that have Internet port 5555 open. Port 5555 is normally closed, but a developer tool known as the Android Debug Bridge opens the port to perform a series of diagnostic tests. Netlab’s laboratory was scanned by infected devices from 2,750 unique IPs in the first 24 hours the botnet became active, a figure that led researchers to conclude that the malware is extremely fast moving.
“Overall, we think there is a new and active worm targeting Android systems’ ADB debug interface spreading, and this worm has probably infected more than 5,000 devices in just 24 hours,” Netlab researchers wrote. “Those infected devices are actively trying to spread malicious code.”