US government-funded phones for low-income families contain non-removable malware

US government-funded phones for low-income families contain non-removable malware

Android smartphone with malware included: it’s American. US government-funded phones for low-income families contain non-removable malware: the case that is making the rounds of the web

In the US, those who find themselves in economic difficulty, proven to be low income, can ask Virgin Mobile, a US-funded mobile operator, a smartphone at a discounted rate, but it is a pity that the android phones financed by the US government come with preinstalled malware which, as a further hoax, cannot be removed.

This news that is going around the web and that is causing a sensation not only for the fact in itself but also because in the last year the United States government has declared war on the Chinese government precisely because, in its eyes, capable of using every type of trick to spy on both its citizens and those of other countries, even with the help of spyware installed on mobile devices (it is one of the accusations that the US has launched against the Chinese manufacturer Huawei).

It is therefore quite ironic that precisely on the smartphones that the United States government itself financed to make sure that it could be sold at an affordable price, the Malwarebytes Lab researchers found malware that does exactly what America has blamed on China.

US phone with pre-installed malware

The phone in question is a UMX U686CL, a very basic and inexpensive model (sold for around $ 35), relatively unknown here from us and offered by Virgin Mobile, through the Lifeline Assistance program, to those who are part of a family unit low-income, complete with malware hidden in the smartphone settings. In particular, it is a free software to install unwanted adware and apps, full of advertisements, without asking for any consent from the user and the “Wireless Update” system which, in addition to providing smartphone updates, also installs apps at will, also this time without asking for user authorization.

These two automatic installation services, in addition to exposing users to significant security risks, cannot even be removed because they are pre-installed and hidden in the device’s operating system and, ironically, they come from China as well as the UMX phone itself. It is likely that neither Virgin Mobile nor the United States government was aware of these facts, which is perhaps even more serious than the fact itself.