Tag Archives: Pokémon GO

Kaspersky Labs: Pokémon Go Malware In Google Play

15 September 2016Kaspersky Lab experts have discovered a new Pokémon Go malware on the Google Play store: “Guide for  Pokémon Go”. This Trojan is capable of seizing root access rights on Android smartphones and using that to install/uninstall apps and display unsolicited ads. The app has been downloaded more than 500,000 times, with at least 6,000 successful infections. Kaspersky Lab has reported the Trojan to Google and the app has been removed from Google Play.


Pokémon Go Malware Found In Google Play

The global phenomenon of Pokémon Go has resulted in a growing number of related apps and, inevitably, increased interest from the cybercriminal community. Kaspersky Lab’s analysis of the “Guide for Pokémon Go” Trojan has uncovered malicious code that downloads rooting malware, securing access to the core Android OS for the purposes of app installation and removal as well as the display of advertising.

The Pokémon Go malware includes some interesting features that help it to bypass detection. For example, it doesn’t start as soon as the victim launches the app. Instead, it waits for the user to install or uninstall another app, and then checks to see whether that app runs on a real device or on a virtual machine. If it’s dealing with a device, the Trojan will wait a further two hours before starting its malicious activity.

Even then, infection is not guaranteed. After connecting with its command server and uploading details of the infected device, including country, language, device model and OS version, the Trojan will wait for a response. Only if it hears back will it proceed with further requests and the downloading, installation and implementation of additional malware modules.

This approach means that the control server can stop the attack from proceeding if it wants to – skipping those users it does not wish to target, or those which it suspects are a sandbox/virtual machine, for example. This provides an additional layer of protection for the malware.

Once rooting rights have been enabled, the Trojan will install its modules into the device’s system folders, silently installing and uninstalling other apps and displaying unsolicited ads to the user.

Kaspersky Lab analysis shows that at least one other version of the malicious Pokémon Guide app was available through Google Play in July 2016. Further, researchers have tracked back at least nine other apps infected with the same Trojan and available on Google Play Store at different times since December 2015.


Over 6,000 Successful Infections And Counting

Their data suggests that there have been just over 6,000 successful infections to date, including in Russia, India and Indonesia. However, since the Pokémon Go malware is oriented towards English-speaking users, people in such geographies, and more, are also likely to have been hit.

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“In the online world, wherever the consumers go, the cybercriminals will be quick to follow. Pokémon Go is no exception. Victims of this Trojan may, at least at first, not even notice the increase in annoying and disruptive advertising, but the long term implications of infection could be far more sinister.

If you’ve been hit, then someone else is inside your phone and has control over the OS and everything you do and store on it. Even though the app has now been removed from the store, there’s up to half a million people out there vulnerable to infection – and we hope this announcement will alert them to the need to take action,” said Roman Unuchek, Senior Malware Analyst, Kaspersky Lab.

People concerned that they may be infected with the Pokémon Go malware should scan their device with mobile antivirus. If they are infected, there are tools available to help them remove the rooting malware, which can be a complex process.

In addition, Kaspersky Lab advises users to always check that apps have been created by a reputable developer, to keep their OS and application software up-to-date, and not to download anything that looks at all suspicious or whose source cannot be verified.


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GrabPokemon Offer For Pokemon Go Trainer

Petaling Jaya, 8 Aug 2016 – Following the hype of the much anticipated game in Malaysia, Grab Malaysia is now offering a special promotion exclusively for Pokémon Go Trainers in Klang Valley, Penang and Johor Bahru.

Beginning from August 9 to August 15, Grab is offering an exclusive RM5 off for 2 rides TO or FROM any PokeArea when passengers pay via cash or debit/credit card for their GrabCar (economy) ride.

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To book a ride, passengers only need to:

Step 1: Download “Grab” via Google Play Store or Apple App Store

Step 2: Key in the pick-up point

Step 3: Type in “POKEAREA” as the drop-off point to see a list of Grab’s selected “PokeAreas” (Locations recommended for high Pokémon hunt activity)

Step 4: Key in promo code GRABPOKEMON

Step 5: Go GRAB em’ all safely and comfortably!


Grabpokemon Promotion

The GRABPOKEMON promotion is the continuation of the successful PokeMobiles, a joint partnership between Grab Malaysia and Hotlink which offered free rides to Pokémon Trainers for two days (Aug 7-8, 2016) in Klang Valley.

“Our cars have been on the road for two days and our drivers had so much fun transporting many excited passengers and also attracted members of the public who just wanted a photo of the car. Hence, we wanted to offer something extra to Pokémon fans outside Klang Valley as well!” said Jaygan Fu, Country Head of Grab Malaysia.

Fu added that the GRABPOKEMON promotion which is applicable to all GrabCar (Economy) rides nationwide is part of the brand’s on-going efforts to surprise and delight their customers. “We realise there are many Pokémon fans out there and we wanted to join in the fun and offer safe, comfortable, convenient and affordable rides to Pokémon Trainers to catch and train their Pokémons,” said Fu.

He added that the four limited edition PokeMobiles has certainly made hunting Pokémons these last two days so much safer and faster! “We wanted to help Pokémon Trainers who were hunting for Pokémons travel safely from one PokeStop to another. Lucky players who booked the car, also upped their ante as each car was equipped with a special Grab goodie bag, water and a car handphone charger for uninterrupted gaming pleasure,” added Fu.

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Catch ‘Em All Faster With The PokeMobile!

Update @ 2016-08-07 : Pokémon GO was officially launched in Malaysia yesterday, so the PokeMobiles will be roaming the streets of the Klang Valley, ferrying Pokémon GO players to nearby PokeStops. Go book one right now!


Catch ‘Em All Faster With The PokeMobile!

Malaysians have heard that the Pokémon GO launch is imminent. Everyone’s raring to go out and catch ’em all! In their eagerness, some will probably get hurt… especially if they are thinking of driving out to hunt for Pokémons.

To help Malaysians hunt Pokémons safely, Grab and Hotlink just launched the limited-edition PokeMobile! Let’s see what the fuss is all about!


Grab & Hotlink Launches The PokeMobile

In this video, Maybel Chan (Maxis’ Head of Content & Engagement), and Jaygan Fu (Grab Malaysia’s Country Manager), officially launch the PokeMobile promotion.

Followed by a Q&A session…

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The PokeMobile Revealed!

These are special Grab cars that have been decked out in Pokémon livery. Each PokeMobile also comes with refreshments, Grab goodie bags, Hotlink PokeChargers and even a PokeMonitor, with Hotlink 4G connectivity.

A total of four PokeMobiles will ply the Klang Valley, shuttling Pokémon GO players to nearby PokeStops, over the first two days. Best of all – IT’S ALL FREE!

To book a PokeMobile for a free ride to the nearest PokeStop, Pokémon GO players have to do is :
  • Install / upgrade the Grab app (available for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store)
  • Select the PokeMobile button in the Grab app, and wait for your pickup!

If that’s not enough, PokeMobile riders who are also Hotlink customers will receive US$100 worth of PokeCoins via Hotlink Cash Online. This is equivalent to 14,500 PokeCoins! Of course, you can also use those PokeCoins to purchase 145 Pokémon lures, 145 Pokéballs or 96 egg incubators.

In addition, Hotlink customers will get 10% off their PokeCoins purchased through Hotlink Cash Online. They will also get 10% off in-app purchases on other games and apps like Clash of Clans, Clash Royale, Smule, Loong Craft, Crisis Action, Candy Crush Saga, etc. on Google Play Store. [adrotate banner=”5″]


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Is Pokémon GO Launching In Malaysia Tomorrow?

Everyone is crazy about Pokémon GO, including Malaysians who have been waiting impatiently for it to be released in Malaysia. They have been disappointed time and time again by rumours that Pokémon GO is going to be launched. Will they be disappointed again?


Grab ‘Em All Faster with Hotlink

This morning, we received a special invitation from Maxis. Oddly enough, it’s for tomorrow morning! Such a short notice is often a sign that something special is coming up. A short notice is often used to prevent leaks – the fewer people know about it, the less likely the information will be leaked.

The invitation was enticingly titled “Grab ‘Em All Faster with Hotlink“, with this accompanying graphic :

There is no doubt that this Maxis event is about Pokémon GO. This has led many to speculate that this is a sign that Pokémon GO is launching in Malaysia tomorrow. Why else would Maxis resort to emailing the media about this event on a Sunday morning?

Find out all about the PokeMobile promotion that Grab and Hotlink announced today!


Pokémon GO Update

Speculation of an impending launch was also based on the major Pokémon GO update that was released just yesterday. That update came with the following changes / improvements :

  • players can now re-customise their character
  • Pokémon move sets have been rebalanced
  • some spawn points have been changed
  • your favourite Pokémon can be locked to prevent accidental transfers
  • the footstep tracking feature has been removed, eliminating the 3-step bug
  • the scan radius has been reduced

The theory is that Niantic will want to fix the major bugs before launching in new regions. The removal of the footstep tracking feature, in particular, is useful in reducing server load. That would be something Niantic would be eager to fix before launching the game in new countries.


Is Pokémon GO Launching In Malaysia Tomorrow?

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Unfortunately, we do NOT think Pokémon GO will be launching in Malaysia tomorrow. After carefully reading the Maxis invitation, we highlight two important key points :

  • The event title – “Grab ‘Em All Faster with Hotlink
  • The event is described as “a special preview

In our humble opinion, Maxis is probably just announcing a future promotion to capitalise on the Pokémon GO craze. Most likely, they will be partnering with Grab to offer free rides for Pokémon GO gamers to Pokestops.

In any case, stay tuned tomorrow morning for our live coverage on the Tech ARP Facebook page.


When Is Pokémon GO Launching In Malaysia?

The urgency of this announcement though is odd. It could mean that a Pokémon GO launch is imminent.

MMO Server Status actually lists Malaysia’s Pokémon GO servers as going live in 25 hours, together with Pokémon GO servers in Israel, China, Mexico, Peru, Venezuela and South Korea.

Thanks for the heads-up, Joshua Wong from The Ideal Mobile!

A cached page also revealed that Grab will offer Hotlink users FREE rides to the nearest Pokestops between 10 AM and 7 PM on Tuesday and Wednesday (August 2 and 3). This is definitely a sign that Pokémon GO is probably launching on Tuesday!


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If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!