Android powers more devices than any other operating system. It also has billions of applications that these smartphone users can download for free on these smartphones. While most of these applications are considered to be safe, security researchers at Avast have warned about 47 Android applications that are disguised as games and are laced with malicious Adware.
These malicious apps which have been downloaded over 15 million times contain trojans that can push intrusive advertisements even when the app is not running. On a detailed analysis of the data that these apps were receiving and sending via the Internet, Avast found that these trojan apps were part of HiddenAds family.
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Apps with Adware
- Draw Color by Number
- Skate Board - New
- Find Hidden Differences
- Shoot Master
- Stacking Guys
- Disc Go!
- Spot Hidden Differences
- Dancing Run - Color Ball Run
- Find 5 Differences
- Joy Woodworker
- Throw Master
- Throw into Space
- Divide it - Cut & Slice Game
- Tony Shoot - NEW
- Assassin Legend
- Flip King
- Save Your Boy
- Assassin Hunter 2020
- Stealing Run
- Fly Skater 2020
While Google has removed 30 such applications from the PlayStore, 17 apps were still found to be active and available to download. According to the experts at Avast, these apps are so carefully camouflaged as important applications or games that it becomes impossible for a regular user to identify them.
To ensure that such apps do not come under the scrutiny of experienced users, these apps are masquerading as games and targeted towards kids or younger audience. These unsuspecting users do not read reviews of the applications and thus are an easy target. It was also found that once installed, these apps do not appear in the app drawer hence uninstalling them becomes a challenge for a regular user.
While Google’s Play Protect scans billions of applications all over the internet daily, the developers try to remain under the radar by creating new developer accounts for each application. Experts suggest that the best way to identify fake app is to read their reviews and also check how many apps the developer has published. Individual developer accounts with just one or two apps that too with negative reviews should raise an alarm right away.
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Jitendra has been working in the Internet Industry for the last 7 years now and has written about a wide range of topics including gadgets, smartphones, reviews, games, software, apps, deep tech, AI, and consumer electronics.