Amid Israel-Hamas conflict, hackers use ‘RedAlert’ rocket alert app to install spyware on Android devices | Technology News | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

RedAlert, an open-source app that alerts Israeli citizens about incoming rockets is reportedly being used by threat actors to install spyware on Android devices.

RedAlert app | RedAlert rocket app | Redalert malwareThe malware packed app offers the same functionality as the original version. (Express Photo)

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RedAlert, an open-source app used by Israeli citizens to provide real-time rocket alerts of incoming rockets is reportedly being used by threat actors to install malware on Android devices.

According to a report by Cloudflare’s Cloudforce One Threat Operations Team, the malicious version of the app offers the same functionality as the legitimate app but accesses sensitive information like contacts, SMS, account information, call logs and list of apps installed on the device.

It goes on to say that the website for the malware-laden version of the app was created on October 12, almost a week after Hamas fired more than 5,000 rockets into Israeli airspace.

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RedAlert fake website Here’s how the fake RedAlert website looked like. (Image Source: Cloudflare)

While the fake website includes links to both the iOS and Android versions of the app, clicking on the iOS button takes you to the Apple App Store. But if you tap the Android button, it downloads an APK that looks and works similarly to the original version.

The infected version of RedAlert also features anti-debugging, anti-emulation and anti-test mechanisms, which makes it hard for researchers to inspect the code. However, the malware-packed Redalert app asks for more permissions compared to the original version on the Play Store.

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In the last few days, apps that alert users of incoming missile strikes have become targets for threat actors. Another rocket alert app, called ‘Red Alert: Israel’, became the target for hackers, who exploited a vulnerability that allowed them to intercept requests and send fake alerts to some users, one of which includes a message that says ‘a nuclear bomb is coming.’

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First published on: 19-10-2023 at 15:32 IST


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