Last month, Google deleted four potentially dangerous apps that contained malware from the Play Store. Even though the Play store has security features like Play Protect, hackers somehow manage to list apps rigged with malware on the app store. They remain on the app store until they get reported. Cybersecurity firm Bitdefender has found 35 new malware-infected Android apps on the Play Store.
The cybersecurity firm mentioned in its blog post that the 35 malicious apps have had over two million downloads in total. Since they are malware-infected apps, they can hide by renaming themselves and by changing their icon. These apps do not appear in the list of the most recently used apps on Android.
Once installed, these apps start showing ads aggressively on the device. Developers of such apps aim to generate revenue through ads. These ads are run through their own framework because they go undetected by Android’s security features. Users need to be careful because ads can lure them into installing other types of malware.
Here is a list of the 35 new malware-infected Android apps
If any of these apps are installed on the phone, you should uninstall them immediately. To see all the apps installed on your Android, open the Play Store, tap on the Google account icon at the top-right corner, and then tap on 'Manage apps and device’. Next, tap on the 'Manage’ tab to sell all the apps and games installed on the phone. Each app will have a checkbox next to it. You can select multiple apps here and hit the trash icon to uninstall them.
Alternatively, users can open the Settings app > Apps > Manage to see the list of installed apps. If you find any malicious apps, apps with duplicate icons, or apps that start with "com.android..." in their names, you need to uninstall them immediately.
How to avoid installing malicious Android apps
Readers should be aware of the fact that just because an app is available on an official app store like the Google Play Store (Android) or the Apple App store (iOS), it does not mean it is safe. The following tips can help in avoiding malware-infected apps on Android phones and iPhones:
Be careful of apps that have a greater number of downloads but fewer or no reviews
It is highly recommended to read reviews before installing an app
If you are unsure about an app, do a background check on the app’s developer
Avoid apps that require special permissions, such as Drawing over apps or access to Accessibility
Avoid apps that ask for irrelevant permissions
Google Play Store, malicious apps, Android, Bitdefender, malware
Cybersecurity firm Bitdefender has found 35 malware-infected apps with millions of downloads on the Google Play Store. These apps have the ability to hide by renaming themselves or by changing their icons. Hence, these should be deleted immediately.