Monday, 22 January, 2018

Pornographic adverts found 'hiding' in children's smartphone games on Google Play

60 Games With 3 Million Downloads Found Showing “AdultSwine” Porn Ads — Now Deleted By Google Pornographic adverts found 'hiding' in children's smartphone games on Google Play
Kristine Garrett | 13 January, 2018, 01:24

That is to say, not necessarily 2018, newly published apps, but rather, apps that in their current form represent what the company considers "the best experiences and top performing apps and games on the Play Store".

You also agree that your personal information may be transferred and processed in the United States, and that you have read and agree to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.

According to Google Play's data, the affected apps have been downloaded between three million and seven million times - a stark warning that, at times, not even Google Play apps can be trusted.

The new addition works exactly like a usual Duo call which includes the Knock-Knock feature through which you can see the preview of the caller before you pick it up.

One of the displayed ads. 1Tap is basically an expense tracking and book-keeping app. Other ads that play also try to trick the user into giving up their phone number by telling them they've won a prize.

Upon installation, AdultSwine waits to initiate its attack until a boot occurs or when the user unlocks their phone. The attacker then selects which of the three malicious actions to take and then displays it on the device owner's screen.

Some of the apps also display fake notices showing the phone has been infected by a virus and provides a malicious link to a fake virus cleaner. In that instance, the button was titled with a seductive: "Remove virus now". The app features a simple to use UI (user interface) that allows Android fans to save time by finding the exact emails they need. But if the victim enters their number, the malware sends premium SMS messages, incurring charges.

"Apps infected with the nasty "AdultSwine" malware are able to cause emotional and financial distress", said Check Point in a blog post. "While in some cases this link is merely an advertisement, it could also lead to whatever social engineering scheme the hacker has in mind". Users have left reviews on the Google Play Store for some of the apps, with one saying, "Don't install for your kids".

After being informed, Google removed the software from its official marketplace.

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