Unfortunately, this kind of news has become increasingly common, with dozens of Android apps being reported as malware carriers every month. A recent investigation by ESET has exposed 42 applications that are loaded with malware.
According to data revealed by the company, most apps have already been removed from the Google Play Store. However, they are still available in alternative App stores and also on dozens of websites that share APKs. Together, these applications have over 8 million downloads, a daunting number.
Confirm that none of these Apps is on your smartphone!
Even if they were removed from the Google Play Store, if you had installed one of these apps, they will still be available on your smartphone.
Among the 42 applications reported, these are the 15 with the highest number of downloads. You can see the full and detailed list in the official ESET publication.
Over 5 million downloads
- Ringtone Maker Pro
- Tank Classic – Super Battle Tank
- Video Download Master
- File Downloader for Insta
- Impossible Tank Battle
- Basketball Shooter Challenge
- Head Soccer World Champion
- Smart gallery
- Free Video Downloader for FB
- Free Social Video Downloader
- HikeTop +
- Heroes jump
- Mp4 Video Downloader
Why are these applications dangerous?
In essence, they were all "infected" with adware that consistently and persistently ran advertisements. In addition, they can collect private information about users, drain the battery of smartphones and is extremely difficult to identify.
In this particular case, the ads displayed occupied the entire screen and appeared at completely random times. What's more, the adware in question also collected a lot of specific information about each smartphone:
- device brand
- android version
- number of applications installed
- available internal memory
- battery state
- information if developer mode is active
- confirm if you have installed Facebook and Facebook Messenger
What can you do to avoid installing such applications
Increasingly, such applications are implementing more sophisticated tools to fool Google Play Store security systems. So the best way to stay safe is to pay the utmost attention when you install new Apps on your smartphone.
Often, the most practical way to review an app before installing is to take a quick look at its ratings. If you see right away that you have a lot more negative than positive ratings, you better stay away from this App.
According to statistics released by ESET, in 2017 Google eliminated over 700,000 malicious applications, banning over 100,000 developers. However, these numbers have grown considerably since then.
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