Android 'ransomware surge'

Ransomware attacks on Android devices running Kaspersky Lab's security software increased almost four-fold in a little more than a year, we're told.

File-scrambling malware attempted to infiltrate 136,532 Kaspersky-protected Android users' gadgets at least once between April 2015 and March 2016, compared to 35,413 users in 2014-2015, according to a new study by the Russian biz.

(That's the number of infections that were blocked by Kaspersky's software; we don't know the number that got through, obviously. We're basically encouraged to believe that ransomware is a growing problem by a company pushing anti-ransomware software.)

Just four groups of malware were responsible for the vast majority (90 per cent) of these attacks, apparently: the Small, Fusob, Pletor and Svpeng malicious families.

Mobile ransomware blocks access to information on a victim's device by locking the screen with a special window or encrypting important files before extorting money from the owner in exchange for unlock codes. ®

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