Low-end smartphones sold to Americans with low-income via a government-subsidized program contain unremovable malware, security firm Malware bytes said today in a report. From a report: The smartphone model is Unimax (UMX) U686CL, a low-end Android-based smartphone made in China and sold by Assurance Wireless, a cell phone service provider part of the Virgin Mobile group. The telco sells cell phones part of Lifeline, a government program that subsidizes phone service for low-income Americans. “In late 2019, we saw several complaints in our support system from users with a government-issued phone reporting that some of its pre-installed apps were malicious,” Malwarebytes said in a report published today. The company said it purchased a UMX U686CL smartphone and analyzed it to confirm the reports it was receiving.

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