Google Pulls 500 Apps With Secret Malware Plugin

29 Aug 2017
by David Jannetta
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Last week researchers from mobile security firm Lookout revealed that they had discovered at least 500 apps with over 100 million downloads that contained a secret backdoor that allowed developers to install spyware at any time.

The post went on to say:

It is becoming increasingly common for innovative malware authors to attempt to evade detection by submitting innocuous apps to trusted app stores, then at a later time, downloading malicious code from a remote server. Igexin is somewhat unique because the app developers themselves are not creating the malicious functionality – nor are they in control or even aware of the malicious payload that may subsequently execute. Instead, the invasive activity initiates from an Igexin-controlled server.

The apps that contain the SDK included:

  • Games targeted at teens (one with 50M-100M downloads)
  • Weather apps (one with 1M-5M downloads)
  • Internet radio (500K-1M downloads)
  • Photo editors (1M-5M downloads)
  • Educational, health and fitness, travel, emoji, home video camera apps

Lookout didn’t publish the list of affected apps because their researchers don’t believe that the developers knew of the spyware capabilities included in the SDK.

At IP Lasso, we are constantly monitoring our Clients brands in the worldwide marketplaces to identify and remove fakes bearing malware before they become a problem. If you would like a free brand report to see how your intellectual property is being presented, drop us a note.

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