What is Upgradesys?

Upgradesys is a new threat for Android-based device users that can spy on you and steal personally identifiable information (PII) from you. However, what may distinguish this dangerous infection from other threats is that it is not one that you infect your smartphone or any other Android device with; this malware is indeed a pre-installed Android application. This simply means that it is already on your device before you could buy it. As a matter of fact, this Trojan program has mainly been found on budget smartphones, such as BLU, which is produced by a Florida-based American company that designs re-branded low-cost mobile devices. But this is not the first time these phones are under the microscope of malware and security specialists. Please read on for more detail on this dangerous infection and what you can do about removing Upgradesys, if it is possible at all.

As we have mentioned, the main source of this new malware invasion, BLU, has already had to face a major crisis last summer  when a spyware called Adups was found on its smartphones. Adups was named after the Chinese technology firm (Shanghai Adups Technology Co.) that developed this spyware that infected an estimated 700 million Adroid devices globally. This spyware was found gathering personally identifiable information, including call logs, application usage data as well as full contents of text messages. Although back then BLU claimed that they removed this Trojan program from their devices upon discovery, somehow it has surfaced on even new models a few times.

This new threat, Upgradesys, has been identified as com.adups.fota, com.adups.fota.sysoper, or FWUpgradeProvider.apk by multiple anti-malware programs. Since this infection is pre-installed, it intrinsically has administrative rights, i.e., root access to your mobile device. This also means that you would not possibly even realize that it is operating silently in the background for long. The worst thing is that you cannot actually remove Upgradesys from your Android phone as it appears to be the part of the default system set up. However, you can disable it as a temporary solution.

Manufacturers can re-image the Read-Only Memory (ROM) of the low-budget phone and sell it on Amazon and other online shops. This is how most unsuspecting mobile users purchase the infected phone. And, this is why it is so important that you only buy smartphones from official vendors. Unfortunately, such pre-installed infection may also affect official sellers but it is still the most secure way for you to get a phone even if it may be more costly, too.

The presence of this Trojan infection can expose you to cyber criminals and breach your privacy in all kinds of ways. Not only can Upgradesys monitor your text messages, but it can also take control of your device and send out messages from your phone. It may connect to its Command and Control (C&C) server and send sensitive information stolen from your phone. What is even worse, Upgradesys may also download other malware infections behind your back. Then, it can also generate a flood of annoying third-party pop-up ads on the websites you visit. However, these ads are not only rather annoying, if you click on them, you could end up on malicious websites and infecting your device even more. You need to be very careful browsing with your mobile phone because Android is known to be bombarded with threats that may even steal your banking details if you were to use your device to log in to your bank account. Just like in the case of personal computers, it is important that you protect your smartphone by installing an up-to-date anti-malware program that can detect and remove all possible threats like these.

Unfortunately, you cannot remove Upgradesys manually due to its pre-installed nature. What you can easily do, though, is locate it in your applications list and simply disable it. However, keep in mind that you need to do this process every time you restart your device since it is not a permanent cure. Another option for you is  to install a program like DeBloater on your PC and use USB debugging to find and remove Upgradesys and Adups infections from your Android device. As for the future, you should make sure that you only buy your phone from reputable source and remember that cheap may also mean that you may have to pay dearly. Make your choice wisely and protect your devices with powerful security tools.

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