We already know that malicious attackers do several things to work their way out of any situation while hiding themselves in disguise, where searching for them becomes hard for the people.
This is kind of an incident where people lose their data by giving permission to an untrusted application. These applications are customized according to the users’ preferences as they used to get to run the application and the experience must be the same as an original application.
The bottom line for these kinds of attacks is they just steal data to threaten the victim for a monetary favor. But did you hear about the swarm that was seen on the Google PlayStore? If not, then this is the chance you get to learn what was the case and how the experts handled the situation. Let’s continue.
On PlayStore several android apps were found being customized with adware and malicious code. The number of downloads might scare you off and that is around 10 million. Several android users have unintentionally downloaded these apps, which has put their data to extreme exposure. But what’s so hard about this for the people? Also, how should they get away from this if you want to know then read this blog completely?
A set of malicious apps
A load of malicious apps disguised as Image-editing tools, Virtual keyboards, System optimizers, and wallpaper changers is found on Google PlayStore. Researchers from Dr. Web observed these apps and the intent of spreading them was clear that the adversary wanted to steal the data from people.
The first step these apps took towards people was pushing intrusive ads. Some of them made users subscribe to premium services without their acknowledgment. Side by side these apps were used in the process to steal social media accounts.
After implementation, these apps requested users for device permissions such as overlay windows and added to the battery saver’s exclusion list. Suspicious moments were there, but the movement of these apps was like someone could react to it. So, in the end, they were left unrevealed.
Most dangerous thing was that you can’t even find them in the app drawers of your android device, so the apps won’t come in the observation of the owner of the device. Sometimes the apps replaced themselves with a core system component like SIM Toolkit. This shows that if they purposely want to steal your details, they can do it anytime without getting in your eyes.
One of the adware apps that came into the observation of the researchers was Neon Theme Keyboard, which still exists on the PlayStore. Downloads are in million, also it got a score of 1.8-star with a lot of negative reviews.
Harsh on Devices: Malicious Apps
The Google PlayStore provides a platform for every new developer to try out their luck in launching their produced apps. This has given the chance the malicious developers to put some of their malicious apps on this platform. Several other apps that have the same attributes were found on Google PlayStore. Let’s take a look at them:
- Some of those apps were customized with Joker Malware, which is known for its levying fraudulent payments on victims’ contact numbers via subscribing premium services. You would be able to see that these are not easy-to-trust apps.
- Previously, Two Facebook Account hackers were seen being spread in image editing tools. Moreover, as nobody ever doubted this app, it made a count of 5 million downloads and is still on the charts.
Several months took the researchers to observe the actions of these apps. If we don’t notice the regular activities of such apps, that day won’t be far when our data will get into their hands. Moreover, these adversaries don’t stop at getting control all over the device until they get any monetary benefit from stealing their data, in return.
Then you must re-check the developer’s review of what he has done from the launch of the application with care. Reviews and Ratings will show the realness of the apps. You must not forget about searching for the permission it demands.
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