It’s unfortunate how often we hear about apps on Google’s platform containing malware (Not that they’re the only ones with a malware problem, Every time we learn about a new Trojan, it’s a reminder to be diligent about downloading new apps. This time, the newly discovered apps have more than two million The downloads are combined, meaning a lot of devices have been compromised.
Cyber Security Doctor Web discovered a Trojan With the name of “Fast Cleaner & Cooling Master” on Play Store. The app is purported for OS optimization, which claims to improve the performance of Android on your smartphone. Instead, the app secretly communicates with developers via Firebase Cloud Messaging or the AppMetrica Push SDK, displaying ads on victims’ smartphones, or using those devices as proxy servers. For example, if you had the app installed on your Android, third parties could route their traffic through your device.
The app had less than 1,000 downloads, which isn’t ideal, but isn’t a major malware breakout either. However, Doctor Web also discovered other Trojans using Firebase Cloud Messaging to communicate with their developers, this time used to load specific websites. They discovered three apps that fit the bill: “Volume, Music Equalizer” with 50,000 downloads, “Bluetooth & Wi-Fi & USB” drivers with 100,000 downloads, and “Bluetooth Device Auto Connect” with one. million download. Bluetooth Device Auto Connect advertised itself as a solution for improving your Bluetooth connection as well as providing an automatic connection to Bluetooth devices so that you could theoretically connect to Android every time you want to join. Bypass the Bluetooth settings menu.
“Bluetooth Device Auto Connect” is not the only Trojan with so many downloads. “Tubebox” also had over a million downloads alone, probably because it pulled people in as an easy way to make money. Users would only need to watch videos containing ads in the app, which would theoretically generate coins and coupons that they could later redeem for real money. The problem was that no one could actually redeem their credits due to “problems reported by the app”. As you might guess, the app was never intended to make users any money. Instead, the developers pocketed all the advertising revenue generated from users’ viewing history. While we don’t have stats on those numbers, the fact that the app was downloaded over a million times means that the scammers walked away with a decent chunk of advertising money.
Protect yourself from malware apps on Google’s Play Store
Unfortunately, Google doesn’t have any kind of alert to suggest an app you’re viewing is potentially malware. Once they approve an app, it appears in the store like any other, until Google learns something about the app. However, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and your device.
First of all, always check the Play Store page of an app thoroughly before downloading it. the app does Do you understand the name? “Bluetooth & Wi-Fi & USB” is a Horrible Name one for an app, and screams malware to me. Next, check the Graphics and App details. Does everything feel carefully designed and well put together? Does the description of the app match the intended use? aThings misspelled or poorly written? Those can be big red flags.
Reviews are also a great help. Often, users who download malware complain about the app’s effect on their phones. You may see negative comments from users about the number of ads it serves, how slow it makes their phone, or how the app doesn’t do anything. If you see enough of these warning signs, you should stay far,