Feeds

Espionage app updated for Windows phones

Next destination: Android

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

A software developer has updated an application that turns smartphones into sophisticated espionage tools that secretly zap contacts, calendar items, and geographic locations to servers of an attacker's choice.

For now, Phone Creeper works only on handsets that run Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system. But Chetstriker, the creator of the snoop tool and a member of a mobile phone hacking collective known as XDA-Developers, has said a version for Android-based devices is almost finished.

On Friday, he released version 9.5 of Phone Creeper to add FTP features and fix bugs involving GPS.

Phone Creeper is billed as an “espionage suite” that is silently installed by inserting an SD card containing files that are freely available online. It doesn't show up under a phone's installed or running programs, and by default it reinstalls itself if it's removed. It allows snoops to remotely control the device by sending it SMS messages. Available commands, which are silently received and deleted immediately, cause the phone to send call and chat logs (even when deleted), contacts, appointments, and GPS location.

Phone Creep is one of several free apps, including this one, designed to show how easy it is to turn smartphones into remote bugging devices. Indeed, Chetstriker has long maintained that he developed the app “because I could and because it seemed challenging and different and fun.” He doesn't use it to spy on anyone and doesn't condone anyone else doing so, either.

Not everyone is reassured. F-Secure, which provides anti-malware protection for Windows smartphones, recently added detection for Phone Creeper.

“Striker does't seem like a bad guy in our book, but a silently installing espionage suite should be detected by a security suite,” F-Secure's blog explained. “The author's motives aren't as important as what the tool actually does.” ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.