French Police Arrest Suspected Android Malware Creator

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Police in France recently arrested a 20-year-old man suspected of involvement in a massive Android malware campaign.

"According to the authorities, the man worked out of his parents' basement ... creating fake apps that pretended to be legitimate applications," writes Sophos' Graham Cluley. "The man's apps are said to have sent SMS text messages without the user's approval, allowing him to earn mobile payments."

"The app also sent him the login credentials for gaming and gambling websites used by the owners of the infected phone," writes IntoMobile's Kelly Hodgkins. "Over the course of two years, this scam earned the developer over 500,000 euros ($650,000)."

"The hacker had never studied computer science but is described by prosecutors as extremely smart," BBC News reports. "He admitted his crimes after he was arrested in the northern city of Amiens, they add. He reportedly told them he was motivated not by greed, but rather a love of computers and an ambition to be a software developer."

"Of course, given he let these scam apps go on for a year and the amount of money collected during that time, it is quite difficult to accept that money was not a factor," Phone Arena reports.

"He is not the first French national to be arrested for spreading SMS Trojans -- in February, two men were arrested in Bobigny, a small town in the northeastern suburbs of Paris, for creating and spreading the Foncy Trojan," notes Help Net Security's Zejlka Zorz.