Security Researchers Uncover 200 Android Apps with Adware Downloaded Over 150 Million Time in the Google Play Store

Google Play Android adware exists in some two hundred apps, downloaded over 150 million times, security research firm finds…

Security researchers have discovered a new form of adware cleverly concealed inside hundreds of Android apps, with more than 150 million installs.

Google Play Android Adware Apps Discovered in 200 Mobile Programs

The suspect malware masqueraded as an innocuous ad-serving platform, which would open back doors to install additional malware.

The purpose of this modus operandi was to circumvent Google’s app store scanning. After installed, said malware deletes the app icon, yet the mobile program persists in the background, which auto-loads every time the device powers up.

After the malware receives its instructions from its command-and-control server, it would secretly go through its list of web addresses, serving adverts to generate fraudulent revenue.

The firm which identified the problematic apps, Check Point, has published a list of the offending apps. Although Google has or is removing these apps, it does not remove them from users’ devices. Meaning, users must track them down individually to uninstall them from their mobile devices.

Presently, the problem consists of adware but experts warn it could evolve into a bigger threat.

Google’s official figures claim it removed approximately 70,000 apps last year from the Play Store.

Bill Boyles

Bill is a freelance writer who covers a wide range of topics, including apps, social media, and search.