'Geinimi' Trojan taking down Android devices in Asia

Posted by Harshad

'Geinimi' Trojan taking down Android devices in Asia

'Geinimi' Trojan taking down Android devices in Asia

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 07:34 PM PST

'Geinimi' Trojan taking down Android devices in AsiaLookout Mobile Security has reported this week that a new Android-based Trojan Horse dubbed "Geinimi" has been taking down Android devices in China over the past month.

So far, there have been no reported cases in Europe or the Americas, as the malware-infected apps have only been seen on Chinese mobile apps websites.

Says the security firm:
A new Trojan affecting Android devices has recently emerged in China. Dubbed "Geinimi" based on its first known incarnation, this Trojan can compromise a significant amount of personal data on a user's phone and send it to remote servers. The most sophisticated Android malware we've seen to date, Geinimi is also the first Android malware in the wild that displays botnet-like capabilities. Once the malware is installed on a user's phone, it has the potential to receive commands from a remote server that allow the owner of that server to control the phone.

Geinimi is effectively being "grafted" onto repackaged versions of legitimate applications, primarily games, and distributed in third-party Chinese Android app markets. The affected applications request extensive permissions over and above the set that is requested by their legitimate original versions. Though the intent of this Trojan isn't entirely clear, the possibilities for intent range from a malicious ad-network to an attempt to create an Android botnet.

If the phone is infected, "it has the potential to receive commands from a remote server that allow the owner of that server to control the phone," says Lookout. "Though the intent of this Trojan isn't entirely clear, the possibilities range from setting up a malicious mobile ad network to creating an Android botnet."

A couple of the games tainted with the Trojan are Monkey Jump 2, Sex Positions, President vs. Aliens, City Defense and Baseball Superstars 2010.

The company makes it clear that any apps coming directly from the Google Android Market are safe.

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EC approves universal smartphone charger standards

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 07:11 PM PST

EC approves universal smartphone charger standardsThe European Commission has approved standards for a new universal USB smartphone charger that will hopefully put an end to drawers full of proprietary chargers for year's worth of old phones.

Based on the MicroUSB, the new standard has already been accepted by fourteen smartphone manufacturers, including Apple, Nokia and Samsung.

All new smartphones from those companies will include a port using the new standard starting next year.

Says Antonio Tajani, European Commission VP for industry and entrepreneurship (via IW):
I am very happy that the European Standardisation Bodies have met our request to develop within a short space of time the technical standards necessary for a common mobile phone charger based on the work done by industry.

Now it is time for industry to show its commitment to sell mobile phones for the new charger. The common charger will make life easier for consumers, reduce waste, and benefit businesses. It is a true win-win situation.

The EC notes that the move will be better, not only for consumers, but for the environment, as well. Old chargers are usually thrown out after a new phone is purchased, even if they are in brand new condition, simply because they are useless.

Sony Ericsson, Motorola Mobility, Qualcomm, Research In Motion, Emblaze Mobile, Huwei Technologies, LGE, NEC, TCT Mobile (Alcatel), Texas Instruments, and Atmel are the remaining companies that have agreed to the standards. Together, the 14 companies account for 90 percent of the European smartphone market.

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Nook Color rooted, can now run Amazon Kindle app

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 06:04 PM PST

Nook Color rooted, can now run Amazon Kindle appBlogKindle has posted instructions on how to root the new Nook Color e-reader, opening up the device to Android apps like the Amazon Kindle application.

The Kindle app is, obviously, not authorized on the Nook Color but rooted users can now enjoy both bookstores on one device.

Reads the article:
Yep, you are reading this right. It's actually quite easy now to get Kindle books on Nook color and have both eBook stores available to you on a single device. This is possible because Nook Color is more of an entry level Android tablet than a dedicated eReader. As it comes out of the box it just happens to start the Nook application by default and not let users run anything else.

However that can easily be fixed by rooting the device and enabling the Android Market. With Andoid market you can install all kinds of applications, including Kindle, Kobo reader. You would also be able to play Angry Birds and watch Youtube videos. Installing the Kindle application for Android will let you read Amazon Kindle books on your Nook Color device.

The blog does warn that rooting may void your warranty or stop you from eventually updating when Barnes & Noble upgrades the device to Android 2.2.

You can check the instructions here: Read Kindle books on Nook Color

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CES 2011: ViewSonic to introduce tablet with phone features

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 05:47 PM PST

CES 2011: ViewSonic to introduce tablet with phone featuresViewSonic will introduce a new tablet at the upcoming CES event, one that will also include phone features.

Despite being dubbed a tablet, the device will only have a 4-inch screen, and run on the Android mobile OS.

There is no word on what processor the tablet will run on, but the company has already introduced a larger tablet which runs on the dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2.

Most notably, the tablet will be able to connect to 4G LTE networks, like the ones Verizon and AT&T are rolling out this year and next.

Dell released a 5-inch tablet/phone hybrid earlier this year, dubbed the Streak, but there are no figures on its sales.

Viewsonic's current 7-inch tablet has seen lackluster sales thanks to critical reviews of the user interface.

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China prepared to ban Skype?

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 05:01 PM PST

China prepared to ban Skype?According to the government's official daily newspaper, popular VoIP service Skype may soon be banned in China, joining the ranks of YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and countless others.

If accurate, the ban will extend to all VoIP services, with the exception of those provided by China Telecom and China Unicom.

Both phone carriers are state controlled.

There is no current timetable for the implementation of the restrictions. When it does go into effect, the paper speculates "services like Skype will become unavailable in the country."

Skype has used the Chinese mobile Internet carrier TOM Online to offer their software in the nation, in its native language, since 2007, and Skype has confirmed it is still up-and-running as of writing.

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Windows Phone 7 hits 5000 apps

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 03:34 PM PST

Windows Phone 7 hits 5000 appsMicrosoft has confirmed today that the Windows Phone 7 platform has reached its next milestone, 5000 applications.

In just two months since launch, WP7 has matched the total number of apps written for the WebOS operating system, which launched in June 2009.

An even better comparison may be that of the BlackBerry App World, which has 15,000 apps.

The news seems to bode well for WP7, which has had developers express concern over the facility of writing for the mobile OS.

Microsoft noted earlier this month that they had shipped 1.5 million WP7 smartphones, but it is unclear how many of those have been sold to end users.

The Apple iOS app store has 300,000 apps and the Android Market has 100,000.

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Skype releases video chat app for iOS

Posted: 30 Dec 2010 02:37 PM PST

Skype releases video chat app for iOSExpected to be revealed at CES next month, Skype has instead launched their iOS video chat app this week, giving iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad owners a chance to video-chat using the popular video-calling service.

Says Skype project manager Raul Liive:
"This season is very special as we are releasing a new version of Skype for iPhone and iPod Touch with video calling. Now you will be able to share all the special moments in video, as they happen, wherever you are."

iOS users can now make free Skype video calls from their devices, however anyone with an iPod Touch 3 or iPad can only receive calls (obviously, no cameras).

The service works via 3G and Wi-Fi and is completely compatible with the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch 4 as long as they are running iOS 4.0 or higher.

Calls can be made between iOS devices, or from iOS-to-PC. For Windows, the owner must be running Skype 4.2 or higher and Mac users must be using Skype for Mac 2.8.

The software works for calls to Linux users, as well.

If you are using an iPhone and want to save minutes, you can make free audio calls to Sype members using the app.

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