Google Play Store Infected by Thousands of Copycat Malware Apps

Android has had quite a tough time of it recently, attempting to get rid of certain malware apps that were making the Play Store seem like a hostile and unfriendly place where you would never be able to truly get what you need. This problem comes on multiple levels which is one of the main reasons why Google is having such a tough time trying to get ahead of it.

For starters, a lot of these malware infected Android apps are counterfeits of other popular apps that have been making waves in their own way. For example, Temple Run is an app that has remained popular for several years now, and the fact of the matter is that counterfeits of this app are everywhere right now. This is why it’s so important to look into how this app could potentially end up being used to infect Android users with malware, as the copycats are often riddled with viruses and hacks that could potentially end up infecting your phone quite seriously all in all, which means lost of personal data, passwords and financial details.

The research, conducted by Australia and Sri Lanka based researchers, revealed the miserable state of affairs in the Google Play Store. Researchers used a neural network to find apps that had similar logos and imagery, their results revealed that there were thousands of fake apps that were poised to infect a multitude of users with malware. This study was conducted over a period of two years, on around 1.2 million apps. The study found more than 1,500 malicious apps asking for at least 5 unnecessary permissions than the original developer of the app, plus, over 1400 bad apps featuring around 5 extra third-party ad/banners.

Google Play Store is riddled with hundreds of data-stealing apps
Photo: Bloomberg / Getty Images

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