Tokyo Prosecutors Drop Case Against Android Malware Developers

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The Daily Yomiuri reports that the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office has dismissed its charges against five Android malware developers, who were first arrested two months ago for allegedly infecting approximately 90,000 people's smartphones.

"The five, including Hirokatsu Okuno, a 36-year-old former chairman of a now-defunct information technology firm, were arrested on suspicion of releasing free smartphone applications containing viruses and plundering the users' address books against their will," the article states. "But the prosecutors office considered it difficult to conclude the information was leaked without their knowledge because a message reading 'downloading contact addresses' was displayed on the phones' screens before people downloaded the applications."

"In addition, prosecutors were unable to come up with evidence to show that the suspects were aware of the fact that they were wrongly acquiring the information," writes Softpedia's Eduard Kovacs.

If the case had proceeded, the five would have faced up to three years in prison or fines of up to 500,000 yen.