It’s been a bad few weeks for Android fans with numerous warnings urging owners to check the apps they have installed on their devices. Now there’s a fresh alert that could affect millions of users across the world and it’s definitely not something to be ignored. In fact, the apps in question are so problematic they have just been banned from the Google Play Store and should now be removed from all devices without delay.
This latest threat, which was discovered by the security team at Dr Web, has been targeting Android owners by using applications that claim to optimise devices or offer rewards for simply watching videos.
However, in reality, this sinister software is spreading nasty adware and trying to steal personal data via so-called phishing attacks. One of the offending apps, called TubeBox, had managed to amass some one million downloads before Google removed it from its servers.
This software promised users incentives for watching online videos but this was just an enticing trick to get people to download it.
Once installed on a phone it never dished out any prizes with the app using its popularity to generate huge revenues for its creators by delivering highly irritating adware that constantly pops up on the device.
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Other apps that have also been removed by Google include Bluetooth device auto connect (1m downloads), Bluetooth & Wi-Fi & USB driver (100k downloads), Volume, Music Equalizer (50k downloads) and Fast Cleaner & Cooling Master (500 downloads).
Explaining more about this threat, Dr Web said: “At the end of the month, the virus record for detecting an unwanted application called TubeBox was added to the Dr.Web anti-virus database.
“With the help of this app, users allegedly could make money by watching videos and ads.
“The creators of this app tried to string their victims along for as long as possible so that they would continue watching videos and ads, earning money not for themselves but for the fraudsters.”
If you have installed any of the applications listed above, it’s wise to delete them without delay as this will stop you from being targeted by the adware.
These five apps now join a growing list of applications that cause harm to devices.
Just last weekend, Express.co.uk reported that three apps had flaws in them that could give hackers full access to personal data including user names and passwords.
And, last month, Google banned more apps from its Play Store after it was found they included bank account-stealing malware.