Google cleaned up the Google Play catalog, removing a total of 22 applications with malicious functionality from its range. It is reported by Ars Technica with reference to the report of the antivirus company Sophos. According to experts, remote programs could run in the background, regardless of the will of the owner of the infected device and, imitating clicks on advertisements, brought money to their creators.
Despite the fact that applications that launched an endless cycle of clicks on banner ads, did not harm the user data and in no way encroached on their financial savings, they did harm to infected devices. Continuous work in the background has had a negative impact on the battery life of the devices and overheated them, risking irreparable damage to vital components.
What are dangerous apps from Google Play?
But the most terrible thing, the researchers ascertain, is that some applications from the list of remote ones did not initially contain any malicious code. They loaded it after the victim was installed on the device, doing it either secretly from the user, or sending a request for an update. Thus, the creators managed for a long time to keep their offspring secret from the moderators and algorithms of Google Play, engaged in the continuous search for dangerous applications.
A total of 22 applications that were removed from Google Play, were downloaded about two million times, which means they lasted long enough in the catalog to gain such popularity. According to Sophos researchers, at least one malicious program originally hit the Google app store assortment back in 2016 or 2017, infecting about a million devices over its entire existence.