While we often think of worst-case scenarios when it comes to malicious software — stolen identities, empty bank accounts, or private data leaks — the aspirations of the malicious behind the software aren’t always so grand. Sometimes a malicious app just wants to make a few bucks from its creator. Of course they are still malicious and now a new batch of Android apps containing trojans have been discovered in the Google Play Store.
McAfee’s Mobile Research Team recently identified 16 Android apps with clicker Trojans on Google Play. Android users downloaded the infected apps more than 20 million times before Google removed them from the store. Unfortunately, just because you can’t get the apps anymore doesn’t mean they aren’t on your phone or tablet.
The McAfee researchers explain that malicious code was lurking in a number of popular utility apps, such as flashlights, task managers and QR readers.
Once installed, the malware starts browsing websites in the background, without the user’s knowledge, to generate fake views and clicks. Not only are you filling the pockets of scammers with ad fraud, but the impact on your device can be significant.
While your phone is browsing websites in the background, your battery life decreases as if you were browsing yourself. If you have weird apps on your phone and your battery life isn’t what it used to be, now you might know why.
Obviously, you should uninstall any apps that use your phone as a click farm. Here’s the full list of Trojan Android apps found by McAfee researchers:
High Speed Camera (com.hantor.CozyCamera)Smart Task Manager (com.james.SmartTaskManager)Flashlight+ (kr.caramel.flash_plus)달력메모장 (com.smh.memocalendar)K Dictionary (com.joysoft.wordBook)BusanBus ( com.kmshack .BusanBus)Flashlight+ (com.candlencom.candleprotest)Quick Note (com.movinapp.quicknote)Currency Converter (com.smartwho.SmartCurrencyConverter)Joycode (com.joysoft.barcode)EzDica (com.joysoft.ezdica)Instagram Profile Downloader (com .schedulezero.instapp)Ez Notes (com.meek.tingboard)손전등 (com.candlencom.flashlite)계산기 (com.doubleline.calcul)Flashlight+ (com.dev.imagevault)
Related: These Fake Antivirus Apps For Android Are Stealing Banking Information, So Get Them Out Now