Google bans 12 popular Android apps! Millions warned to delete them now – Express
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It’s only January but there’s already an urgent Android alert that phone owners would be wise not to ignore. Google has just removed 12 apps from its popular Play Store after the discovery that they were tricking users into watching endless adverts or trying to steal sensitive data via so-called phishing attacks.
The issues, which were discovered by the cyber security team at Dr.Web, affected a number of apps with some so popular they had been downloaded over 5 million times by Android users across the world.
The first pair of apps to see their demise from Google promised users rewards for staying active. The more walking and exercise users did each day the more points they scored towards free prizes.
However, when most people tried to cash out they were either blocked from claiming or asked to watch endless adverts with nothing in return. A total of three apps all used the same tactic with one still available on the Play Store.
If you have them on your device you might want to consider deleting them now.THE APPS ARE…
• Lucky Step – Walking Tracker • 10 million downloads
• WalkingJoy • 5 million downloads
• Lucky Habit: health tracker • 5 million downloads (currently still available on the Play Store.
The next bundle of applications to be removed from Google’s servers were found to be trying to siphon personal data via phishing tactics.
Phishing is when attackers attempt to trick users into doing ‘the wrong thing’, such as clicking a bad link that will download malware, or direct them to a dodgy website.
According to Dr.Web, some of these fake applications were distributed under the guise of investing software, directories, and questionnaires whilst others tempted users with the offer of simple and addictive games.
Of course, none of those enticing features were actually real. Instead, victims were asked to provide their personal data in order to submit an “application” for account registration or to communicate with a so-called “specialist”. The apps which have all now been removed from the Play Store include.APPS RECENTLY REMOVED FROM THE PLAY STORE
• Golden Hunt • 100K downloads
• Reflector • 100K downloads
• Seven Golden Wolf blackjack • 100K downloads
• Unlimited Score • 50K downloads
• Big Decisions • 50K downloads
• Jewel Sea – 10K downloads
• Lux Fruits Game – 10K downloads
• Lucky Clover – 10K downloads
• King Blitz – 5K downloads
• Lucky Hammer – 1Kdownloads
According to detection statistics collected by Dr.Web for Android, the activity of adware trojans and spyware increased in December 2022. At the same time, many new threats were discovered on Google Play over the course of last month. Among them were dozens of fake apps and trojans that subscribe victims to paid services.
Now is a good time to be on high alert when downloading any new apps. Check the reviews and try to only install applications from trusted developers.
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