updated 08:39 pm EDT, Thu October 18, 2012
Man admits to crimes as police arrested him
A French hacker has been arrested for spreading a virus through fake smartphone applications. Prosecutors in the case claim that he stole tiny sums from 17,000 Android phone owners, accumulating about €500,000 ($653,700) since 2011. The 20-year old claims to not be motivated by greed, but instead a love of technology and the desire to be a software engineer.
Working from the basement of his parents' home in Amiens, France, he wrote free apps designed to look like commercial offerings. When installed, the apps sent a text message without the user's knowledge or permission to a paid number he had set up. Additional offerings transmitted user credentials from gaming and gambling websites the phone user had subscribed to.