If you use an Android powered phone or tablet, be warned that there’s a dangerous new virus doing the rounds that could potentially destroy your device.
While most viruses target your private data and personal information, this worrying new virus has a way of physically destroying your phone.
According to Yahoo News, the malware takes over your phone and makes it overheat until it no longer functions.
Known as the Loapi Trojan, the virus has the ability to put the device under so much strain that it eventually overheats and completely stops working.
Reports warn users to be aware of strange pop ups or if your device randomly directs you to download an app from the Google Play App Store or any other store.
According to researchers from Kaspersky Lab, the virus finds its way onto devices from malicious adverts or apps.
What tends to happen is users will continuously get a notification asking for administrative rights.
Because the notifications are constant, those who have been infected tend to unknowingly grant access, causing the virus to quickly destroy their device.
Nikita Buchka, security expert at Kaspersky Lab told Yahoo News that although this particular virus can’t steal details or money, it is one that people should be careful of.
“The surprisingly unexpected risk which this malware brings is that even though it can’t cause direct financial damage to the user by stealing their credit card data, it can simply destroy the phone,” she said.
“This is not something you would expect from an Android Trojan, even a sophisticated one.”
The best way to protect yourself against the virus is to be careful of the content you download.
If you are downloading apps, ensure that they are official apps from the Google Play Store, rather than from websites.
According to website Android Central, there are simple things you can do to protect your phone.
The first, is to be sure what you’re clicking. Unfortunately, a lot of people who create viruses do so in the hopes that they can trick people into clicking harmful links. If something doesn’t look right or you’re unsure, it’s best not to click it.
Secondly, as mentioned above, try to limit app downloads to the Google Play Store only. While most phones have the function to source apps from other stores, you are leaving yourself open to an attack if you do this.
When you do download an app, also make sure that you understand the permissions you are giving to the app. While it’s not uncommon for apps such as Facebook to ask permission to access your photos or contacts, be aware that others that do this could be trying to infect your device.
If unsure, it’s best to check with a mobile phone store or to avoid downloading until you know it’s safe to do so.