ESET experts recently said that 99% of all mobile viruses target Android devices. Another confirmation of this is the report, according to which there were 24 applications on Google Play with millions of downloads. All of them are recognized as potentially dangerous to users.
The list of applications is varied: among them are games, browsers, calendars, launchers, file managers, weather forecasts, antiviruses, VPN services and other utilities. All of them were produced by six different developers, but the investigation showed that the latter are associated with one Chinese company Shenzhen HAWK.
Security experts were alarmed by the fact that all of these programs request too many permissions not related to their activities. So, six of them need access to the phone, which automatically allows them to make calls and send messages even without the knowledge of the user. 15 applications require access to GPS to determine the location of users and personal data on the device. The requested permissions do not end there.
In total, several such programs receive almost complete control over the device and can transfer data to remote servers. As an example, they can track the places that users visit to offer them relevant ads later. According to experts, this is the most harmless thing that can happen.
Google has already responded to this situation, and most applications have been removed from Google Play for violation of the rules of the store. However, they can still be distributed through third-party resources and continue to work on devices.
A source: gizchina.com