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profishingrods.com March 19, 2019


Android AV apps don't work

16 March 2019, 02:44 | Cameron Gross

Just Android things: 150m phones, gadgets installed 'adware-ridden' mobe simulator games

Google Play Store app Pixel 2 XL AA 3

Android Adware "SimBad" Security experts at Check Point Software Technologies discovered that 206 apps contained SimBad. As of May 1, new apps submitted to the Google Play Store will not be accepted if they don't follow the new icon guidelines.

Considering the fact that the Google Play Store is the place where everyone goes to whenever they want to download a new app or game, the Android parent is always looking for new ways to improve the service's performances and stability.

"SimBad acts now as an adware, but already has the infrastructure to evolve into a much larger threat".

Do you use an android antivirus app?

Past studies have confirmed that hackers use fake antivirus apps to fool unassuming users into downloading malware to their devices. For example, if a feature allows a user to search for a restaurant nearby, the app only needs to understand the user's location when the user opens the app to search for a restaurant. Unfortunately, they also identified up to 150 million who have downloaded it unknowingly.

Most of the tested apps had a review score of four or higher on Google Play's five-star scale, making it hard for users to derive any meaningful, impartial information about an app's efficacy, AV Comparatives reports. For instance, the adware may hide an icon of a particular app to prevent users from uninstalling it. This tactic is common amongst Android malware, and this one is not an exception.




Along with displaying ads, SimBad allows the attacker to install applications remotely, opening certain URLs in the browser and open certain apps that can cause trouble, such as malware.

The new update changes the build number of the Google Play Store to 14.0.28 and as previously mentioned, it is available in the form of APK.

The truth is that Check Point also unearthed other feature in the code.

Each of the over 200 applications spotted by researchers has since been removed from the Google Play Store via Google's policies but some of those were extremely popular.

According to Check Point's Research and Development Manager Jonathan Shimonovich, Google reacted very fast to the discovery.

Many of these apps are created with the same developer making some of them have a similar interface instead of showing a fully running malware scanner. It was found that numerous antivirus apps instead of scanning the apps, simply used a whitelist/blacklist approach based on package names than relying on the code for deciding whether an app is risky or harmless.



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