Four dangerous Android apps were downloaded over 1 million times. Cybersecurity researchers discovered that these apps would redirect you to malicious websites to steal your data and annoy you with adware. Check this malicious apps list for 2022 to ensure you’re safe.
We’ll break down which apps are putting you in danger. Then, we’ll give you a step-by-step guide on how to protect yourself. This year, cybersecurity experts have been working overtime to expose infected apps.
In fact, analysts with ThreatFabric discovered dangerous malware droppers you may have downloaded from the Google Play Store. Tap or click here for a malware warning from Google that you should never ignore. Read on to save yourself from a nasty new information-stealing campaign.
Here’s the backstory
Earlier this week, Malwarebytes blew the whistle on a group of malicious apps from a developer called Mobile apps Group. You may have downloaded one of these four apps from Google Play. After all, they’ve stockpiled well over 1 million downloads.
Don’t feel bad if you fell for their professional facade. They’re designed to trick you, Malwarebytes reports. At first, they work normally, so you might not notice any signs of foul play.
A few days after the initial download, they’ll start acting maliciously. “Why the wait?” you may wonder. It all comes down to the neverending cat-and-mouse game between Google and cybercriminals.
Google is always trying to root out dangerous apps which can throw a wrench into criminal plans. For example, in July, Google removed 52 bad apps that steal your information and take over your phone. Tap or click here to make sure none of them are on your Android.
As a result, crooks look for devious new ways to evade detection. They’re designing malicious apps with time-based delays that attack you after you’ve let your guard down. This way, the Google Play Store may not catch them.
Malwarebytes found that these apps wait around four days before the scam begins. After that, they’ll start opening ads in your Chrome browser. These ads are pay-per-click and line the pockets of cybercriminals.
These apps work as part of a malware operation called HiddenAds, which redirects you to advertisements. These four apps are especially relentless because they’ll launch Chrome tabs on your smartphone every two hours. Your private data can be endangered if you click any links on these sites.
Check this list. If you downloaded any of these apps onto your device, remove them now.
Four malicious apps to delete ASAP
1. Bluetooth Auto Connect
With over 1 million downloads, this app has a lot of influence. It promises to help you connect to any Bluetooth device “automatically in a split second.” It has a 3.5 rating on Google Play Store, with 2.8 thousand reviews.
Delete it now to protect your Android. While you’re at it, check your smartphone for these other potentially dangerous apps. If you see any familiar icons, remove them from your phone as soon as possible.
2. Bluetooth App Sender
This app has 50,000+ downloads, according to the Play Store.
The app description says, “APK Files was created so that you can share any files (including media and audio, applications and games, as well as text documents) through convenient program that are installed on your smartphone. And also with the capabilities of the apk sender application, you will have the ability to delete applications in one click.”
Take note of the grammatical error. It should have said “a convenient program” or “convenient programs.” Unprofessional English errors are often dead giveaways of scam apps. Tap or click here for a few more red flags of a scammer.
3. Driver: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, USB
This app has over 10,000 downloads, as you see on the Google Play Store.
The app description says, “The Android bluetooth driver is a small assistant connect application that can be used when the gadgets (more often printers) does not detect USB, bluetooth, wifi connection.”
As you can tell, this paragraph’s grammar is less than stellar. It should have said “do not” instead of “does not.” Always keep your eyes peeled and look for errors when reading app descriptions.
4. Mobile transfer: smart switch
This app has the smallest reach, with over 1,000 downloads. You may have downloaded this app if you’ve ever needed help sending or receiving files.
Luckily, there are many free and simple methods for sharing large files. Tap or click here to easily share files from one Android phone to another.
Use this malicious Android apps list for 2022 to stay safe
As of the time of writing this article, each dangerous app is still available for download on Google Play Store. We recommend deleting them ASAP.
Otherwise, you could deal with adware cluttering your smartphone. Worse, you might accidentally give your private information to hackers.
Here’s how the scam works:
- After you download one of these apps, everything works normally for about four days.
- Then, the app starts opening malicious sites in Chrome.
- Even if your phone is locked, the app will open malicious Chrome tabs.
- You’ll have to constantly close tabs, which increases your risk of accidentally clicking links on the page.
- Not only that, but this fills your user history with dangerous sites — including pornographic websites.
You’ll also have to deal with annoying pop-ups that prompt you to “update” the device. Don’t do it; you could download malware. Tap or click here for three dangerous types of Android malware to avoid.
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