Google has removed 29 apps from Play Store after they were found to be stealing pics and showing porn ads. The apps were also found to display phishing and scam ads.
The researchers at Trend Micro found that they were all disguised as a “beauty camera” apps and have been downloaded over 4.3 million times with the majority of downloads originating in India. The apps ask the users to upload their pictures in order to beautify them, however instead of beautifying the picture it displays various fake prompts as a diversion.
Malicious, tricky and full of ads
The apps are designed to be tricky and it doesn’t make itself apparent to the users immediately. Trend Micro researcher’s analysis on one of the apps showed that it hid itself from the applications list so users couldn’t uninstall it easily.
The apps also pushed full-screen apps everytime users unlocked the phone, including pornography and scams. The users will be lured with ads to pay for certain services, however, after payment, nothing would happen.
The apps would also ask for personally identifiable information as well and redirect the users to phising websites.
List of the malicious apps
|com.beauty.camera.years.pro||Pro Camera Beauty||1,000,000+|
|com.cartoon.art.photo.ygy.camera||Cartoon Art Photo||1,000,000+|
|art.eff.filter.photo.editor||Artistic effect Filter||500,000+|
|com.selfie.camerapro.pro||Selfie Camera Pro||100,000+|
|com.camera.beauty.kwok.horizon||Horizon Beauty Camera||100,000+|
|com.effects.art.photo.for.self||Art Effects for Photo||100,000+|
|com.solidblack.awesome.cartoon.art.pics.photo.editor||Awesome Cartoon Art||100,000+|
|com.photoeditor.artfilterphoto||Art Filter Photo||50,000+|
|com.photocorner.artfilter.arteffect.prizma||Art Filter Photo Effcts||10,000+|
|com.perfectmakeup.magicartfilter.photoeditor.selfiecamera||Magic Art Filter Photo Editor||5,000+|
|appworld.fillartphotoeditor.technology||Fill Art Photo Editor||1,000+|
|com.photoeditor.cartoonphoto||Cartoon Art Photo||1,000+|
|com.photoeditor.prismaeffects||Prizma Photo Effect||1,000+|
|com.cmds.artphotofiltereffect||Cartoon Art Photo Filter||100+|
|com.latestnewappzone.photoartfiltereditor||Art Filter Photo Editor||100+|
|timepassvideostatus.photoarteffect.cartoonpainteffect||Photo Art Effect||10+|
|com.techbuzz.cartoonfilter||Cartoon Photo Filter||5+|
Source: Trend Micro Blog