Google Play Store is the home of Android applications. A user can find and download apps according to his preferences starting from gaming, reading, social networking, blogging and many others. But at the same time, Google Play Store is being misused as there are some apps that are trying to fool people so that the owners of those apps can earn benefits from the user.
Google recently removed some apps for being engaged in malicious activities. This includes a long list of Android apps that promised to offer various gifts to the users like sneakers, shoes and tickets but actually installed a botnet on a phone. The botnet is actually known as “Terracotta” and it was discovered by the White Ops’ Satori which is a mobile security team. They are still doing more research on this. These kind of apps lure people by promising them to offer free perks if they install them. Users then had to wait for two weeks to receive the freebies.
Within this time period, the apps ran WebView which is a light version of Google Chrome. It was then used to run ads and gain profit from fake ad impressions which users were completely unaware of. According to the White Ops’ Satori team, Terracotta can actually avoid detection from defrauded networks of ads. Reports also say that Terracotta apps leads to heavy usage of battery and mobile data. Terracotta apps were running a hug network and according to sources, around 2 billion ads were loaded in the final week of June from over 65,000 phones. Though most of these apps have been removed, Google is suspicious that a few more still exist. Since the list of those apps have not been revealed, Google has advised its users to double check the details before they install any app in their phone.