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What is Surveillanceware?

Surveillanceware is a type of malware that allows bad actors to capture a victim’s normally private online activity. This can include texts, messaging apps, geolocation data, photos, documents, voicemails, and even phone conversations. While it behaves much like spyware, a key difference is that it is used for specific targets rather than users en masse. This type of malware is typically associated with mobile devices, with Android versions in particular making recent headlines.

How to Recognize This Threat: As these are often mobile-based, malicious apps are prime surveillanceware delivery mechanisms. Additionally, it may be delivered through social engineering emails through malicious links or attachments.

How to Prevent This Threat: Avoid surveillanceware infection by verifying the validity of any mobile app before downloading. Additionally, as with just about any malware, do not open attachments or click links in emails unless sure of their origin. Further protect your phone and mobile activities with mobile endpoint solutions, like Sophos Mobile.