Security software vendor Bitdefender is warning of Valentine’s Day scams and spam that are targeting lovelorn online users.
The company has identified a number of Android apps that request permissions from users that aren’t needed for the app to run, such as the Valentines Day 2014 Wallpaper app which asks for access to browsing history and location data and the ability to push location over the internet; and the Valentines Day Frames app which requires permission to read the user’s contact list.
Bitdefender warns that these permissions are most likely sought by the ad-placing network SDK.
Social networks are also seeing Valentine’s Day exploits, such as the Love letters for chat, status app on Google Play which has permissions that can also add or modify calendar events, send emails to guests without the owners’ knowledge, read calendar events plus confidential information, directly call numbers and change audio settings.
The company also reports a rise in spam related to Valentine’s Day, with a 10% increase in spam overall in one day from 22nd to 23rd of January. Valentine’s spam includes invitations to join dating sites, advertisements for ‘miracle’ slimming products, discounts on gifts such as flowers and chocolates, and adverts for fake luxury goods including watches and jewelry.