Google removes 3 dozen apps triggering Mobile Security Threat!


Internet Juggernaut Google has removed over 36 apps which were triggering threats to its users’ mobile security. The company pulled the said three dozen highly threatening apps from its Play Store in the last week of December after it discovered that they were infected with ad-serving and data-stealing malware.

Israel based Check Point Software Technologies was the company which discovered and reported the malware to Google.

In a media statement issued on January 5th, 2018, Check Point Technologies revealed that the malware, dubbed as Lightsout was embedded in 22 different Android utilities and flashlight applications. The purpose of the malware was to generate illegal ad revenues to the developer and also to steal personal data like email ids, photos, videos, and banking apps info of users.

It said that the malicious apps were weeded out by the web search giant after they were downloaded between 1.5 million and 7.5 million times worldwide. Means, before Google could take action many of the downloaded users would have fallen prey to the adware or could have handed over their personal info to the hackers based remotely.

According to a separate threat report generated by TrendMicro, most of the 28 apps dubbed as mobile security tools were named Security Defender, Security Keeper, Smart Security and Advanced Boost by their creators. They were prevailing on the Google Play Store with descriptions mentioned capabilities like scanning, cleaning junk, saving battery, cooling CPU, locking apps, messaging security and Wi-Fi Security.

Researchers say that the work functions were described in such a convincing way that users couldn’t differentiate the genuine security apps with the fake ones.

Trend Micro researchers say that the apps harvested sensitive data like Android ID, Mac Address, details of the network provider, information about the Operating System, Brand & Model of the device, device specifications, language, location information, permissions granted to the installed apps, usage stats, and notifications.

Now that’s a lot of serious information……isn’t it guys?

Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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