Mobile Phone Virus

What Does Mobile Phone Virus Mean?

A mobile phone virus is a malicious computer program that targets cellular phones and other wireless PDAs. Once infected, a mobile phone can become a source for spreading the virus by sending texts and emails to other vulnerable devices. These texts and emails can lead other users to open or download the virus. Mobile phone viruses can also come in the form of malware that spreads through downloaded apps.


Also known as a cell phone virus.

Techopedia Explains Mobile Phone Virus

At one time, mobile phone viruses were an urban myth. Unfortunately, the Bluetooth and Internet capabilities of modern cell and smartphones have increased the vulnerability of these devices to computer viruses and malware.

Some notable mobile phone viruses include:

  • Cabir: The first verifiable example of a mobile phone virus, Cabir was created by the 29A, a group of hackers from the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Cabir uses Bluetooth technology to infect mobile users within a range of 30 meters while disguised as a security file. Each time a mobile device is powered on, the virus launches and scans the area for other vulnerable devices. Because the virus cannot actually destroy data, Cabir is not considered dangerous. However, it causes reduced battery life resulting from a frequent searching for other Bluetooth devices.
  • Commwarrior: In March 2005, Commwarrior infected Symbian Series 60 mobile phones. Using the multimedia messaging system, it sends a replication to all of the numbers stored in the phone’s contacts, generating high bills for the phone’s owner.
  • Trojan-SMS.AndroidOS.FakePlayer.a: In August 2010, the first Trojan horse virus for mobile phones was detected on smartphones using Google’s Android OS. This virus initially showcases like a media player, but when installed, it starts to send messages in mass numbers, resulting in huge bills for the user.

Companies have released mobile security software to help protect consumers from mobile phone viruses and malware.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…