If you’ve ever wondered why those pesky pop-ups are showing up on your Android phone, you may be shocked to learn that it could be infected with malware — and it might have come through the official Google Play Store.
Malware, worms, and viruses have long been a menace for internet-connected users who have long been using desktops, or laptops to connect to the web. However, as a major chunk of users has started moving to the mobile ecosystem, hackers, and cybercriminals are also adapting to the shifting landscape of hacking. This primarily involves adapting their attacks on mobile devices. Malware, worms, and even viruses are the first stage of attack where hackers rely on the carelessness of the users to infect their devices. The number of malware that has been discovered on apps in the Google Play Store in the recent past has gradually increased over years.
For the past year, Android malware authors have been increasingly relying on a solid trick for bypassing Google’s security scans and sneaking malicious apps into the official Play Store. The method is performed using something called “droppers,” which is a type of code hidden deep within an app that attacks a device with malware in multiple stages.
The trick relies on the use of a dual or multi-stage attack technique that’s quite common in desktop-based malware, but which in the last year is also becoming popular on the Android market. The key of this malware is to spread and establish an attack surface on the smartphone so that it can download more serious worm, or virus later.
Google needs to do something to fix this because they know the reasons, working, behaviour, and other details of how dropper apps work.
Discovering malware-ridden apps on Google Play Store means that malware and worms are able to evade the security protections set up by Google giving us a hint at how advanced cybercriminals are getting with progressing time.