The Goldluck malware has been around for more than a year. The malware basically gave hackers privileges which allowed them to send premium messages and earn money. Historically, Goldluck has been associated with popular classic game apps on Android. Today, security researchers revealed that “more than a dozen iPhone apps covertly communicating with a server associated with Golduck”.
As Tech Crunch reports, “Wandera, an enterprise security firm, said it found 14 apps — all retro-style games — that were communicating with the same command and control server used by the Golduck malware.” Michael Covington, Wandera’s vice-president of product revealed that Goldluck had been on their watchlist. Communication between iOS devices and the suspicious domain called for further investigation by them.
Till now, the command and control server just displays list of icons in a pocket of ad space in the upper-right corner of the app. So, there is nothing much to worry about. But, the apps also sent back IP address data and location data in some cases, back to Goldluck servers. Tech Crunch even verified the claim, and confirmed that the app sent back what app, version, device type, number of adds displayed and IP address of the device.
There can be some serious complications in the future though. The researchers added, “A hacker could easily use the secondary advertisement space to display a link that redirects the user and dupes them into installing a provisioning profile or a new certificate that ultimately allows for a more malicious app to be installed.” According to them, the apps themselves don’t pose major threat. But, the backdoor that they open, may make the users vulnerable. Moreover, since the servers are sending malicious payloads to Android users, iPhone users can suffer the same. Neither Apple nor any of the developers have commented on the matter yet. The list of apps which are affected can be found below.
- Commando Metal: Classic Contra,
- Super Pentron Adventure: Super Hard,
- Classic Tank vs Super Bomber,
- Super Adventure of Maritron,
- Roy Adventure Troll Game,
- Trap Dungeons: Super Adventure,
- Bounce Classic Legend, Block Game,
- Classic Bomber: Super Legend,
- Brain It On: Stickman Physics,
- Bomber Game: Classic Bomberman,
- Classic Brick – Retro Block,
- The Climber Brick, and
- Chicken Shoot Galaxy Invaders