Google has again updated its app library as it has removed 17 apps from the play store after they were reportedly infected with the Joker Virus. This is the second time in the last 7 days that such a step has been taken by Google. Earlier in the week, Google removed 6 apps despite a report claiming there were 14 more apps that were claimed to stealing money according to a digital security company called Sophos.
A California-based IT security company called Zscaler led research and monitored these 17 apps and found that they were infected by the dangerous Joker Malware. This is not the first time apps have been removed after having been found to be infected with the malware.
The malware is supposed to be easily added onto apps by making very small changes to the code of the app. This is the most important reason why constantly apps have been found breaching the Play Store’s security and be able to publish the apps for download to the users.
Joker is one of the most prominent malware families that continually targets Android devices. Despite awareness of this particular malware, it keeps finding its way into Google’s official application market by employing changes in its code, execution methods, or payload-retrieving techniques. This spyware is designed to steal SMS messages, contact lists, and device information along with silently signing up the victim for premium wireless application protocol (WAP) services. Zscaler Security Researcher stated
The list these 17 apps that have been removed from the Play Store is:
- All Good PDF Scanner
- Mint Leaf Message-Your Private Message
- Unique Keyboard – Fancy Fonts & Free Emoticons
- Tangram App Lock
- Direct Messenger
- Private SMS
- One Sentence Translator – Multifunctional Translator
- Style Photo Collage
- Meticulous Scanner
- Desire Translate
- Talent Photo Editor – Blur focus
- Care Message
- Part Message
- Paper Doc Scanner
- Blue Scanner
- Hummingbird PDF Converter – Photo to PDF
- All Good PDF Scanner
These apps are very harmful to any user and so if any of these apps are present on your device it is highly advised to uninstall it immediately. Apart from losing money, you also have the threat of sensitive information such as SMS, call logs, contacts, and more being accessed by hackers.
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