Google Inc. (GOOG) Play Store Malware Count Shows No Decline: Android Popular Among Scammers [REPORT]

Must Read

Elon Musk Added Over $100 Billion To His Net Worth In Just 1 Year, Leaves Jeff Bezos Behind

Jeff Bezos may the world's richest person in the world but it's Elon Musk who has been...

iPhone 12 Plagued With Serious Problems: Should You Buy It, Still?

A serious problem with Apple iPhone 12, identified recently, is good enough to give a second thought...

Elon Musk Overtakes Bill Gates And Becomes the 2nd Richest Person in the World

It's been a good week for Elon Musk and his electrical vehicle business Tesla. Earlier this week,...

The number of fraudulent apps on Play Store from Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) seems to be on a steady rise. Scammers developing Japanese fraud-apps have published close to 1000 apps during August and have been able to trick users into downloading these apps at least 8,500 times. Malware threat has been a serious problem for Android and if not addresses quickly can affect Google’s reign in the smart devices segment. As of August, 44% of Android users were found to be still using the Gingerbread version of the Android OS, which is the most vulnerable to scam due to lack of proper virus and malware prevention code. Scammers are continuously looking for security loop-holes in order to gain access to customers’ data. One-click fraudulent apps are the current nuisance looming in the Play Store.

Daily publication count for August

Since the beginning of the year, the number of one-click apps published totaled approximately 2500 by August, and is showing no signs of slowing down. Most of these apps do not survive more than one night and are removed from the store by the following morning. Although, it appears that one night is enough for the scammers to score numerous downloads due to extensive publishing done by the scammers. Some of them are so well disguised and published that they are able to survive a whole weekend and in some cases, several days – allowing time for hundreds of downloads.

Apps published monthly

Scammers continue to find new tactics to attract large number of downloads. These tactics have not been successful for long and soon disappeared. However, one of the newest variant has had some success in staying alive on Google Play, though the number of downloads remain limited. These apps claim to provide free adult content and thereby attract large number of users. They include numerous links to adult-related sites, but a couple of similarly-camouflaged links within these apps lead people to fraudulent sites that attempt to trick people into paying a fee (typically around US $1000) without properly signing them up for the paid service. Camouflaging malicious links with legitimate ones helps the apps to stay hidden from security checks. The bad links also lead to a redirector URL that then directs the apps to open whatever sites the redirector is configured with which allows scammers to easily modify where the apps ultimately lead to on the server side if they are under suspicion of being involved in any malicious activity.


While app stores allow users to easily search for and download apps, risks of getting fooled into downloading illegitimate apps is very prevalent. The Android OS has seemingly become a popular platform for hackers to publish fraudulent apps containing malwares like SMS Trojans and spywares. Last year, 100,000 Android devices were reportedly infected by a particular type of malware, raising serious concerns about the stability and security of Android OS.Infections can also be of varying degrees: while some malwares render the devices useless, others can reveal information about a users’ location. Some malwares like SMS Trojans can make calls and send text messages without the users’ knowledge and leave the users with hefty phone bills while others run in the background and record financial information of transactions happening over the internet.

While iOS from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) uses more efficient malware preventing codes and strict screening of apps before they are put up on the store makes it less vulnerable to threats like these. Google should follow suit, in order to prevent malwares from infecting customers’ devices, and it should do it ASAP because if this continues, Google may lose out market share as people begin to question the software’s integrity.

Source: Symantec


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

Backed By First-Time Shoppers, Flipkart And Amazon Dominated Festive Online Sales in India

It seems like Flipkart and Amazon squeezed the most out of the month-long festive season in India...

Amazon Gets Slapped With Penalty As GOI Prepares To Tighten The Noose On Ecommerce Players!

In a recent move, the Indian Government slapped Amazon on its wrist for not mentioning the country of origin detail for products...

Facebook’s Past Comes Back To Bite As South Korea Fines Them For 2018 Scandal

The social media behemoth Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) has once against proved they are the true arch-nemesis of modern-day user-privacy!

Amazon Future Group Dispute Deepens As Singapore Court Turns Down Future Group Plea

The dispute between Amazon and Future Retail is, apparently, far from over anything soon as the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) has...

Google Pay Fee On Instant Transfer: An Indication Of Google’s Aggressive Monetisation Strategy?

Google has decided to levy fee on instant payment, starting from the US market. A few days back, Google...

Twitter Account Verification Is Back, But Has it Lost Its Mojo?

Twitterati queue up! As the Twitter account verification process which is responsible for awarding blue badges prepares to...

In-Depth: Dprime

Will ‘TikTok By Microsoft’ Be A Winner?

For the last two years, TikTok has been in the public eye for all sorts of reasons. First, it was the exploded...

Facebook Subscription Model: Looking Beyond Ad Dollars?

Seldom do job listings create a stir this gripping. However, when the job listing in question is a stealth post from Twitter,...

Will The Online Food Delivery Market in India End Up Becoming A Two-Horse Race?

It's pretty much evident that the food delivery space in India is all set to get riled up soon enough as one...

More Articles Like This