Millions Downloaded Adware Affected Apps From Google’s Play Store

by StartupWorld Staff         

The latest research from ESET on the adware-affected app in the Google Play store is quite alarming. According to the new research, a year-long adware campaign is going on Google Play store. The apps involved has been installed 8 million times from Google play store alone.

ESET researchers found 42 apps containing adware. Google has removed half of them on the heels of the report, yet those will be present in third-party apps. The team also tracked down its operator. 

In recent times, several reports came regarding the adware on Play Store. Adware is a type of malware that hides in your phone. It leads you to unwanted and scam ads. It can affect the battery resources and collect your personal data without your knowledge. 

The latest reported adware was much more difficult to find from the hiding places. In this case, adware came along with video downloading, gaming, and so on.

Millions Downloaded Adware Affected Apps From Google’s Play Store

Once a user starts using the adware-affected app, the full-screen ad appears, and it removes the shortcut icon. As a result, removing the ad becomes more difficult. According to ESET researcher Lukas Stefanko, the apps will mimic Facebook and Google’s apps to avoid spotting. 

“The adware mimics these two apps to look legitimate and avoid suspicion–and stay on the affected device for as long as possible,” says Stefanko.

The research does not assure the security of Apple’s App Store. Those apps will be present in the App store as well since some of them have iOS versions as well. 

The ESET blog displayed the 21 apps affected by adware. Most of them have 4 stars rating on Play Store and millions of downloads. Video Download Master is prominent among them. 

Stefanco led researchers had reported 72 harmful apps with over 335 million installs that were found on Google’s Play Store last month. In the beginning of October, another report came about a rogue spyware app that hit the official Play store, twice.

Cybersecurity experts are suggesting users be more vigilant while installing apps by reading the reviews and information carefully.


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