If you want to stay safe, you must delete these apps immediately!
Google always work to make Play Store a safe market. So, last year they took down over 700,000 dangerous apps.
However, a lot of malicious apps are still available on Play Store. Some of them can share your personal information, collect the data from your phone, or even steal money from your bank account!
Cybersecurity companies like Check Point listed about 22 popular utility and flashlight Android apps - with advertising malware "LightsOut" - that have a couple of million downloads.
We created a list of the most suspicious apps
1. Malicious Wi-Fi apps with up to 500,000 downloads
Check Point has listed many dangerous Android apps that claim to offer free Wi-Fi credentials/keys, hotspots, speed analyzers and boosters, and network guard, etc.
Some of them are: Master WiFi Key (100,000-500,000 downloads); Free WiFi Connect (100,000-500,000 downloads); WiFi Security Master - WiFi Analyzer, Speed Test (50,000-100,000 downloads); Free WiFi Pro (10,000-50,000 downloads); Network Guard (1,000-5,000 downloads); and Smart Free WiFi (1,000-5,000 downloads).
2. Social media
These apps also became very popular and then lost popularity very quickly. In this case, hackers have nothing to do with them, it’s just that the apps take a lot of energy and kill the battery so the smartphone itself starts lagging. For example, many Facebook users find the mobile version in the browser much easier to use than the official app.
3. Apps claiming to be useful Flashlight services spread LightsOut
Some app developers claiming to offer useful LED flashlight are also spreading LightsOut, according to Check Point.
Flashlight apps are among the most popular apps that spread advertising malware. They include Brightest LED Flashlight-Pro (10,000-50,000; Brightest Flashlight (10,000-50,000 downloads); Cool Flashlight (10,000-50,000 downloads); and LED Flashlight (1,000-5,000 downloads).
Users need to understand that they don't need third-party apps for using their smartphone's flashlight.
4. Weather apps
Weather apps became extremely popular at first, but it was discovered that there were a lot of viruses in them. For example, there was a case when a weather app had an in-built trojan that collected the data from the owner’s phone and sent it to the attackers. For the most part, they were interested in credit card data.
The popularity of weather apps is declining now. It’s much easier and faster to check weather forecasts through a browser.
5. Call, voice recording
Most smartphones have inbuilt voice/call recording features. Users should avoid installing apps offering features that are already present on their devices.
"Call Recorder" app is the most popular one with 1,000,000- 5,000,000 downloads, the highest on Check Point's list. Others include Call Recorder Pro (100,000-500,000 downloads) and Voice Recorder Pro (1,000-5,000 downloads).
Clean Master, and other optimizers like that take care of clearing your cache and deleting unnecessary programs. However, most modern phones have this function in their system already which makes these apps useless. They also make the battery life shorter. You won’t make the system faster, you will only slow it down and get ads as a “bonus.”
7. Built-in browsers
Built-in browsers are often installed on the phone system “out of the box” and they are mostly slow and not very popular. In most cases, built-in browsers are opened when you click a link. Unlike, for example, Google Chrome, these programs don’t have any protection from data interception and they slow down the system performance.
8. Antivirus programs from unknown developers
When people started hacking phones and stealing data, mobile antivirus applications started appearing. And then, hackers had a great idea and created their own antivirus apps. These apps can steal user personal data and even completely block the phone.
9. Browsers with additional features
This category includes browsers with special features, like watching videos and streaming. However, such applications have two serious disadvantages. First, the number of built-in ads is unbelievable. The ads are very annoying and they make the system very slow. Second, the applications require access to many parts of the system, even managing calls. This makes them very unsafe.
10. Apps for increasing the amount of RAM
The apps which claim that they can increase the amount of RAM are optimizers. They can only clear a cache temporarily and the phone already has the ability to do that. About RAM — you won’t get more than your phone initially has. These programs don’t just spend the resources that you have, but can also easily collect your data.
11. Lie detectors
You can’t take these apps seriously because they are created just for fun. Maybe in the future, if all phones are equipped with biometric sensors, will they be able to read the change of heart rate when answering questions. But, now lie detectors in phones are as useful as crystal balls. Just like similar apps, they shorten your battery life. Also, these apps don’t need access to your contacts and personal data. So, if an app like this is trying to get access, don’t install it.
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