Google is stated to have taken away 13 applications from Google Play following a security researcher discovered that the applications were installing malware on handsets. The researcher asserted, malicious apps have been downloaded and installed by over half a million Android users on their devices.
The applications not only displayed no valid functionality but also veiled in the devices to make it simpler to install malware. Fascinatingly, 2 of these applications had also presented within the store’s “trending” division. These applications, cataloged as car and truck driving simulations, are not accessible on the Play Store anymore.
In a tweet, Lukas Stefanko, an ESET security researcher, disclosed particulars regarding the 13 malicious applications found in the Google Play Store. He asserted that these applications entailing Android malware were downloaded more than 560,000 times.
Amusingly, all the applications registered one developer, Luiz Pinto. Essentially, these applications were masked as games, but didn’t function and instead crashed each time an individual attempted to launch them.
Few of these Android applications comprise a fire truck simulator, truck simulator, luxury car driving simulator among others as well as the thumbnail pictures display graphics equivalent to most legal gaming applications. As per Stefanko, the exposed applications would conceal themselves and also their icons after people launched them. Further, they would be solicited to install other APK known as “Game Center,” although they didn’t have any valid functionality. Also, few videos have been posted by the researcher showing how the applications would function.
It isn’t the first instance that a vast sum of Android users has been impacted by malicious applications entailing malware. An auto-clicking adware known as Judy was found on 41 applications in the previous year and stated to have impacted between 8.5 Million and 36.5 Million devices. Moreover, another botnet malware known as FalseGuide had supposedly infected several Android devices through Google Play.