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Adware Apps Promoted On Facebook For Android Are Being Installed In Millions On Google’s Play Store

A number of adware apps are receiving publicity on top social media platforms like Facebook. And that’s causing so many of these apps in the form of cleaners for your systems and optimizers to increase.

These are restricted to Android devices and are therefore tricking users who continually install them in millions from the Play Store.

Since they are all adware, they lack basic functionalities that had been promised from day one, including push advertisements. But the worst part is related to how they last for a long time on your device.

They can also resist being deleted by hiding across various devices by altering their physical appearances such as names or specific icons. Hence, they’re roaming around in disguise as the Play Store or as a part of your device’s Settings too.

These adware apps have the capability to abuse Android devices’ Contact providers. Through this means, data gets transferred from one device to an online service.

And each time a new application gets downloaded on your device, the subsystem is notified. Hence, the adware could possibly be making use of it to begin the whole process linked to serving ads. But to any regular user, it may just appear as if these ads have arrived, thanks to the legitimate application that they’ve downloaded.

A new study by analysts from McAfee found these adware applications. They have noted how the apps don’t even need to be launched after they’re downloaded if you wish to see the ads as the adware can actually start working automatically, despite zero engagement.


One of the first moves by such dangerous apps is the creation of a service that displays ads and lasts on the device permanently. In case the whole process gets killed, it can even relaunch immediately.

Just imagine a device that continually alters its presence and how ads are served with zero interaction from any given user.

McAfee says users are so naïve that they just blindly trust the app as they feel Play Store links seen on an app like Facebook would be legitimate. But little are they aware of the threats associated.

McAfee’s report has also managed to signal out a number of junk cleaner types of apps whose downloads range between 100,000 and go all the way up to 1 million. A few names that made the long list of adware include Keep Clean, Junk Cleaner, Strong Clean, Power Doctor, and Fingertip Cleaner. And most of those affected hailed from South Korea and Brazil but it has spread worldwide too.

Thankfully, it’s deleted from the Play Store but if you’ve got it on your device, you really need to think fast and get rid of it manually.

It’s amazing how popular such cleaning software apps are on the Play Store, despite the fact that they provide little to no benefits. Hence, cybercriminals are making use of this tactic to the best of their ability so they can reap the benefits from vulnerable targets.

Read next: Latest report says Ransomware and Business Email Compromise Attacks are causing 70% of the cyberattacks we see today

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