Google Play is a great platform for promoting your own apps created for Android even if you are not a professional developer since this service is not particularly strict about the quality of the products which can be offered to users there. Unfortunately, this also means that some of the apps available on this service might be viral.
You should not assume that the fact an app is particularly popular among users or featured by a high rating means it is safe. The experts of the Dr.Web company have found an entire range of programmes available on Google Play which contained Trojans as well as malware components stealing personal data of the Facebook users. Actually, one of the dangerous apps offered by the popular service for Android software was actually downloaded almost six million times! Certainly, you should check it right now whether you have it on your phone as well or may be some other app from the list created by the team of Dr.Web.
The exact list of the dangerous programmes which you might have downloaded
It has already been mentioned there is an app among the malware found by the experts of Dr.Web on Google Play which was downloaded almost six million times. This app was PIP Photo and the exact number of downloads at the moment it was identified as viral was 5 856 010 times.
The next app is also quite popular on Google Play and is dedicated to photo editing. It is Processing Photo which was downloaded over 500 000 times.
Such apps as Horoscope Daily, Rubbish Cleaner and Inwell Fitness were downloaded over 100 000 times. App Lock Keep was downloaded more than 50 000 times.
The rest of the apps were not thus popular compared to the previous ones however, they could have stolen information from many people too. They are Lockit Master which was downloaded over 5 000 times and Horoscope Pi downloaded more than 1 000 times.
Finally, the list created by the specialists of Dr.Web also includes App Lock Manger which was downloaded only ten times when it was identified as malware.
How did these apps steal data?
Pay your attention to the fact all of these programmes were working according to their description. Their functions worked properly whether it was showing horoscopes or photo editing. Some of them were even optimising the Android system.
Yet, all of them were using a special fraudulent mechanism. They were offering a possibility of switching the adds off or getting access to all of the function for free. The only thing a person had to do was authorisation on their Facebook account.
On top of that, the form for authorisation was absolutely normal so that the users did not get suspicious about that. Still, a special script was active at the same time which was able to steal the data inserted into the forms. Once a person was logged into Facebook, the apps were also stealing cookies and sending them to the servers of third parties.
What should you do now?
Now, when the fraudulent activity of these apps was revealed, the majority of these apps were deleted from Google Play. Even though you will not be able to download them from this platforms, they might still be available on other services, so you should be very careful if you are looking for an app with some of the functions of the apps on the list above.
Undeniably, you should make sure you do not have any of these apps on your phone right now. If it happened that you had downloaded it, you should delete it immediately. Of course, it is important to change the password to your Facebook account as well.
It will also be sensible to be particularly attentive in the future when it comes to the apps which are ready to grant you with full access to all of their functionality if you log in with Facebook. As far as you know, usually getting full access requires purchasing subscription and is normally granted for free. This might be a suspicious sign.