In a nutshell: Not for the primary time, Google has eliminated an app from the Play Store after discovering it harbored malware. The utility, which had been downloaded over 100,000 instances, was capable of steal cellular customers’ Facebook login credentials.
Researchers at French cellular safety firm Pradeo revealed that the app, Craftsart Cartoon Photo Tools, contained a model of an Android trojan malware known as Facestealer.
As with related malicious functions, Craftsart Cartoon Photo Tools did carry out a few of its promised features. It transformed images into cartoon- or painting-style photos—there are quite a few apps out there that do the identical factor—although some evaluations say it merely added a filter to photographs. However, it included a small piece of code that might steal customers’ Facebook login credentials, thereby getting access to their accounts and another providers that will reuse the identical login/passwords.
The stolen credentials could possibly be used to entry Facebook accounts and all the private data they include. Hackers may additionally attempt to dupe victims’ buddies by sending them faux messages.
“Facebook credentials are utilized by cybercriminals to compromise accounts in a number of methods, the most typical being to commit monetary fraud, ship phishing hyperlinks and unfold faux information,” wrote Pradeo.
We’re seeing an rising variety of malicious apps circumventing the Play Store’s safeguards and being downloaded tons of of hundreds of instances. They usually obtain this by mimicking common apps’ features and totally concealing what little malicious code they include, as was the case with the Joker-infected Color Message app downloaded 500,000 instances earlier than it was eliminated in December.
The finest option to keep away from these malicious apps is to test the evaluations. Many who downloaded Craftsart Cartoon Photo Tools recognized it as a faux or some form of rip-off—it additionally had a 2.1-star ranking—nevertheless it nonetheless managed to achieve 100,000 downloads.