Mobile Cyberespionage Campaign ‘Bouncing Golf’ Affects Middle East

We uncovered a cyberespionage campaign targeting Middle Eastern countries. We named this campaign “Bouncing Golf” based on the malware’s code in the package named “golf.” The malware involved, which Trend Micro detects as  AndroidOS_GolfSpy.HRX, is notable for its wide range of cyberespionage capabilities. Malicious codes are embedded in apps that the operators repackaged from legitimate applications. Monitoring the command and control (C&C) servers used by Bouncing Golf, we’ve so far observed more than 660 Android devices infected with GolfSpy. Much of the information being stolen appear to be military-related.

The campaign’s attack vector is also interesting. These repackaged, malware-laden apps are neither on Google Play nor popular third-party app marketplaces, and we only saw the website hosting the malicious apps being promoted on social media when we followed GolfSpy’s trail. We were also able to analyze some GolfSpy samples sourced from the Trend Micro mobile app reputation service.

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Source: Trend Micro