News Center

Svpeng malware targeting Android devices

‎06-18-2014 12:52 PM

MalwareCybercriminals have begun targeting AndroidTM mobile devices with malware known as Svpeng Trojan. USAA is aware of Svpeng and other mobile malware and continues to evolve its defenses.


Know what you’re up against

Svpeng infects a mobile device when a user unintentionally opens an attachment and downloads a piece of software. The virus then scans for mobile banking apps. It will also freeze the device until a ransom is paid to the cybercriminals. Once your device is infected Svpeng is difficult to remove, so it’s important to know what to avoid and take steps to help protect your mobile device.  


Recognize and avoid phishing attacks

Avoid becoming a victim by following safe Web browsing habits. Online attackers can make a deceptive e-mail message (phishing) look like a genuine communication from your bank, friends or family, tricking people into downloading malware or revealing their personal information. Some scammers even take over legitimate websites and lure surfers into downloading their malware. Watch this video to learn about common phishing tactics to avoid. 





Take an active role

Enable Quick Logon on Your Mobile Devices

Quick Logon is a more secure way of logging on to your USAA mobile app. Even if a hacker is able to guess your PIN, he would still need to have your phone to log on. Quick Logon uses  two-factor authentication, which requires:


  • Something you know — your PIN.
  • Something you have — your phone with Symantec Validation and ID Protection.

How does it work?

Quick Logon uses Symantec™ Validation and ID Protection (VIP) technology to generate one-time security codes. Instead of logging on with your Online ID, password and PIN, simply enter your PIN to access your accounts. We use a security code along with your PIN to log you on with a unique password each time.


How do I enable Quick Logon?

Quick Logon is available for the USAA Mobile Apps for Androidand iPhone®. Setting it up is easy. Open the USAA Mobile App, navigate to the settings panel and turn on Quick Logon.


Remember that USAA and other financial institutions will not ask for your personal or financial information in an email. Also, all official USAA emails will contain a Security Zone watermark in the upper-right corner. Please report suspicious emails to


Additional Protection to Consider

  • Beware of malicious applications. Download apps only from trusted sources like the Apple® App Store or Google® Play.
  • Avoid links from unknown sources. This includes emails and social media posts. Malicious links could direct you to websites or install applications compromising your device.
  • Use trusted networks. Connecting your device to unknown wireless networks can expose your data. Avoid accessing sensitive information, like banking, if using an unsecured or unknown network.
  • Turn off unnecessary services. Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, location apps, NFC (near field communication) apps and other connection abilities can be disabled to help protect your device when you're not using it.
  • Avoid using tools not meant for your device. This can expose you to greater security risks.
  • Secure your data and photos. Back up all important documents and photos to an external storage device, such as a cloud-based server, external hard drive or flash drive.
  • Install and use anti-virus software and browser protection tools.1 Some devices, especially those running Android, support the use of anti-virus software that helps prevent bad applications from attacking your device. Browser protection products provide an additional layer of security to warn you about malicious websites. You can learn more about capabilities offered by individual mobile anti-virus vendors by visiting their websites. Some are referenced below. 




          Trend Micro 


What should I do if I see suspicious charges on my account?

Monitor your account(s) and review your monthly statements carefully. Notify USAA immediately if you see any unauthorized activity. Also, you can sign up for transaction alerts on


1Mobile anti-virus products are offered by individual vendors and not by USAA.  USAA makes no representation, warranty or endorsement regarding these or any other mobile anti-virus product.  The links provided above are for convenience and education only.  USAA encourages members to use personal due diligence when selecting and using technical and security products.


Safety guidelines are not intended to be all inclusive, but are provided for your consideration. Please use your own judgment to determine what safety features/ procedures should be used in each unique situation.


Use of the term “member” or “membership” does not convey any eligibility rights for auto and property insurance products, or legal or ownership rights in USAA. Ownership rights are limited to eligible policyholders of United Services Automobile Association.


The trademarks, logos and names of other companies, products and services are the property of their respective owners.





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Charles Pratt

Charles "Chazz" Pratt

Charles "Chazz" Pratt III is a former U.S. Army Captain who made the Military-to-Civilian career transition in 1994. In his book, The Fort Living Room Transition Course, he shares valuable tips & tricks to help you succeed. Since his transition from the military, he's worked for several Fortune 500 companies, including Pfizer, Genentech, and St. Jude Medical, among others.

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Joseph "J.J." Montanaro

Joseph "J.J." Montanaro is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner.

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