Experts warn over latest Android Trojan

The growing trend for malware authors to target increasingly powerful smartphones continues with the news that anti-virus experts have discovered a new Trojan targeting Android devices in the wild.

The Trojan, named 'ADRD' by security firm AVG, targets Internet-connect devices running Google's Android mobile platform and recruits them for a Chinese botnet, stealing private data and using the devices' Internet connections to carry out distributed denial of service attacks.

The Trojan reportedly monitors network activity, user alarms, and other operating system events to detect when it can carry out its nefarious actions without the end-user being aware anything is awry. A full installation of the Trojan also results in the International Mobile Equipment Identity, or IMEI, number of the device being forwarded to the Trojan's creators to better track each infection.

The ADRD Trojan is hardly the first to target mobile devices. The same Chinese botnet used by ADRD includes Trojanised phones from various platforms, including the widely distributed Symbian Series 60 from Nokia. Many in the industry believe that the growing power of smartphones makes them an obvious target for future electronic criminals.

It's not yet known how widespread the ADRD Trojan is, but users are advised to avoid installing software from untrusted sources in order to prevent control of their phones falling into the wrong hands.