Researchers at Pradeo has surfaced new apps that are housing with Joker malware and spreading via Google’s Playstore. Six apps disguised as scanners, emoji, SMS, wallpaper, and AppLock have combined downloads of more than 200,000, before being deleted by Google after reporting. Yet, these are still being installed in phones which need to be deleted manually.

New apps found in Playstore infected with Joker malware

Joker malware has long been a persistent problem for many Android phones. The makers of it are highly sophisticated to sneak it stealthily into users’ phones via various means, especially through Google’s Playstore.

Though Google removed about 1,700 apps containing it to date, they’re popping up with just new techniques every time.

Joker Malware
Joker Malware

And now, a new report from Pradeo security revealed that about six apps named as Separate Doc Scanner, Fingertip GameBox, Push Message – Texting&SMS, Emoji Wallpaper, Safety AppLock, and Convenient Scanner 2 are reported to have infested with Joker malware and are infecting users devices upon installing.

Pradeo researchers estimated the total downloads of all these apps cross 200,000 marks when combined, wherein, the Convenient Scanner 2 and Separate Doc Scanner have amassed over 100,000 and 50,000 installs respectively.

Joker malware within them is categorized as Fleeceware, where it’s capable of intercepting the messages and subscribing the user’s device to several unwanted premium/paid services.

Besides gaining money for these referral subscriptions, Joker malware can also stimulate clicks for gaining additional income. The malware tries in different ways to sneak into the Google Playstore, which is an authentic platform to be trusted by people.

Though Google regularly checks and removes those apps, Joker malware hides either by lessening its code or obfuscating it professionally.


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