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Have you tinkered with your Fire TV? You could be at risk for malware infection

If you’ve ever installed an app like Kodi or Terrarium TV to watch movies and TV shows you’d otherwise have to pay for on your Amazon Fire TV device for free, you could be in big trouble, and we’re not talking about the legal kind. A piece of Android malware by the name of ADB.Miner has begun to appear on Fire TV and Fire TV Stick devices, according to AFTVnews.

You might not be infected yet, but if you’re currently using Kodi, Terrarium TV, or a similar app, it might only be a matter of time. A growing thread on the XDA forums contains posts by multiple Fire TV owners who have been infected by the malware. The malware installs as an app called “Test” with the package name “com.google.time.timer.” Once it’s installed, it begins using your device to mine cryptocurrency.

Fortunately for your average Amazon Fire TV user, only users who have turned on certain settings in the device’s developer options that are turned off by default are at risk. If you’ve never touched these settings, you have nothing to worry about. If you have, the easiest way to rid yourself of the malware and/or make sure you don’t need to worry about it is to perform a factory reset on the device. Once this is done, you’ll be safe from the malware.

If you know for a fact that you’ve turned on the settings that leave the device vulnerable — ADB debugging or allowing apps from unknown sources — and you don’t want to factory reset your device, there are a few other options, but they aren’t nearly as simple. AFTVnews recommends installing an app called Total Commander from the Amazon App Store. Launch the app, and you’ll be able to see if the “Test” app is installed. If it is installed, select the app and hit Uninstall twice. Once this is done, disable apps from unknown sources and ADB debugging.

Another post on the XDA forums suggests installing a modified version of the malware that doesn’t actually do anything, which will keep you from being reinfected. This is only for those who are positive they know what they’re doing. If you’re worried, the easiest route is just to do a factory reset and call it a day.

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Kris Wouk
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Kris Wouk is a tech writer, gadget reviewer, blogger, and whatever it's called when someone makes videos for the web. In his…
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