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Saturday, June 25, 2022

Many new malicious Android apps crop up, delete them now before they steal your data and cash

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If you’ve downloaded an interesting-looking Android app from Google Play anytime in the last few weeks that for one reason or another felt… kind of sketchy, you might want to check out our latest list of malicious titles caught red-handed by various security researchers employing different data and money-stealing tricks.

While most of these have been promptly kicked out of the official Play Store, at least three apps are still available for new installations at the time of writing, including one that’s racked up over 50,000 downloads around the world, and perhaps more worryingly, a 4.8-star user rating average based on 900+ reviews.

The bulk of those reviews are most likely fabricated, mind you, with a number of others correctly identifying the app as a “fraud” or “total fake”, highlighting one of the easiest ways to avoid these types of dangers. But before elaborating on that, let’s break down the list promised above in two smaller lists.

Here are the newest malicious Android apps you need to get rid of

  • Document Manager
  • Coin track Loan – Online loan
  • Cool Caller Screen
  • PSD Auth Protector
  • RGB Emoji Keyboard
  • Camera Translator Pro

And these are some slightly older apps also discovered carrying malware

  • Fast PDF Scanner
  • Air Balloon Wallpaper
  • Colorful Messenger
  • Thug Photo Editor
  • Anime Wallpaper
  • Peace SMS
  • Happy Photo Collage
  • Original Messenger
  • Pellet Messages
  • Smart Keyboard
  • Special Photo Editor
  • 4K Wallpapers
Unless you’re extremely adventurous (read reckless) and you like to be among the first few people in the world to try out shady apps with features that are in no way special or unique, the chances of you finding any of these titles installed on your phones are microscopic.

 

Unfortunately, we can’t say the same about the first group, which includes at least three apps that managed to break into the five-digit Google Play download territory at one point or another. In theory, that puts tens of thousands if not more than 100,000 Android users in danger of having money, passwords, and other types of personal information stolen without mercy.

Their tricks are taken straight from “popular” Joker and Hydra playbooks, in case you’re wondering, collecting everything from phone numbers to email addresses, passwords, and even credit card details to try to do as much personal and financial damage as possible without user knowledge, and of course, without any form of authorization whatsoever.

What can you do to stay safe?

Even though there’s really no sure-fire way to keep all types of malware out of your Android phone at all times, you can try to do the following and minimize your risks:

  • Only download popular apps from trustworthy stores like Google Play.
  • Delete any title that feels suspicious, potentially malicious, or that is confirmed as such by cybersecurity experts ASAP.
  • Check the average user rating score and then browse a few dozen individual reviews for potential red flags (many 1-star ratings, repeat mentions of privacy intrusions and other types of shady behavior, “scam”, “fake”, etc).
  • Protect your privacy with ExpressVPN, the world’s leading VPN provider (you even get a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
  • Exercise good judgment (if anything looks too good to be true… or too good to be free, perhaps it’s wiser to stay away).
  • Continue keeping an eye on PhoneArena for more in-depth coverage of similar mobile security threats in the future.





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