35 malicious apps with potential to harm your smartphone identified; delete them ASAP

The apps have the potential to bloat your smartphone with malware

Highlights
  • A new report has surfaced online, suggesting the presence of 35 malicious apps on the Google Play Store.
  • These apps aggressively send advertisements and also change their name and logo after installation.
  • Over 2 million users have installed at least one such app on their smartphone.

Installing an app of your choice on your smartphone simply takes a couple of clicks, but you should be wary. Some of the apps come with malware that could harm your handset. A new report from Bitdefender suggests that the Google Play Store has as many as 35 malicious apps that could bloat your phone with malware. The apps reportedly send advertisements and also change their name and logo once they’re installed on your smartphone. Per the report, the apps have been installed on smartphones by potential victims over 2 million times—when considering publicly available data. Here’s the list of the 35 identified apps on the Google Play Store:

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Remove these apps or avoid installing them if you come across them:

  1. Walls light – Wallpapers Pack
  2. Big Emoji – Keyboard
  3. Grad Wallpapers – 3D Backdrops
  4. Engine Wallpapers – Live & 3D
  5. Stock Wallpapers – 4K & HD
  6. EffectMania – Photo Editor
  7. Art Filter – Deep Photoeffect
  8. Fast Emoji Keyboard
  9. Create Sticker for Whatsapp
  10. Math Solver – Camera Helper
  11. Photopix Effects – Art Filter
  12. Led Theme – Colorful Keyboard
  13. Keyboard – Fun Emoji, Sticker
  14. Smart Wifi
  15. My GPS Location
  16. Image Warp Camera
  17. Art Girls Wallpaper HD
  18. Cat Simulator
  19. Smart QR Creator
  20. Colorize Old Photo
  21. GPS Location Finder
  22. Girls Art Wallpaper
  23. Smart QR Scanner
  24. GPS Location Maps
  25. Volume Control
  26. Secret Horoscope
  27. Smart GPS Location
  28. Animated Sticker Master
  29. Personality Charging Show
  30. Sleep Sounds
  31. QR Creator
  32. Media Volume Slider
  33. Secret Astrology
  34. Colorize Photos
  35. Phi 4K Wallpaper – Anime HD
If you have got any of these apps installed on your device, we would advise you to uninstall them right away. As mentioned above some of the apps could have changed their names and icons, so check each and every app and remove anything that looks fishy.

These apps can harm your phone

Researchers at Bitdefender, which have unearthed 35 apps available on Google Play Store, claim that these apps, after installation, change their name and go on an advertisement spree. “One of the ways cyber-criminals monetize their presence on Google Play is to serve ads to their victims. While this may sound diminutive, these ads served to victims are disrupting the user experience and can link directly to malware”, says Bitdefender in the post.

On the Android app marketplace Play Store, these apps have over 100k+ downloads with countable-on-fingers to no reviews. Over 2 million users have installed at least one such app on their smartphone. One of these apps, “GPS Location Maps,” downloaded over 100,000 times, has no reviews on Google Play Store. Immediately after download, the app displays websites in WebViews, an advertisement, and changes its name from “GPS Location Maps” to “Settings.”

How to check the safety of an app

Here are a few things you can do before downloading the app on your phone:

  • Check developers name
  • Download apps by the original developer
  • Check out reviews and rating