Google removes 21 infection-filled applications from its Android Market

infected nexus s


Be on the lookout

It’s a dangerous digital world out there. Your best intention to get the latest and greatest application from the Android Market could prove to be quite dangerous. As discovered by Reddit user ‘lompolo‘ and several others, a rogue developer that goes by ‘Myournet’ has ripped off 21 applications and infected them full of malicious code that roots your phone, steals information, and leaves a backdoor open for the rogue developer to return unannounced.

Sneaky, conniving hackers

As pointed out over at Android Police, the worst part of this whole ordeal was that there were “50k-200k downloads combined over 4 days.” The developers of these apps did try to get in contact with Google to report the problem. Unfortunately it was reported that despite many attempts, their cries for help went unheard. Every minute those apps sat in the Android Market, there was potential for lots of problems on many devices and lots of devices were affected. Luckily, Aaron Gingrich over at Android Police heard the cries for help on Reddit and pinged a contact at Google. After that, all of the applications removed were removed ASAP.

What now?

Hopefully you were not someone who downloaded these apps. If so, it seems that a full system wipe is the only solution for the infection. Thankfully the applications are no longer available on the Android Market and fixes are in the works so that this cannot happen again. Symantec, Samsung, and Lookout are in the process of addressing the problem and Google has already patched the hole in Android 2.3 Gingerbread. While Google has fixed the problem in the latest revision of their OS, it takes carriers and phone manufacturers entirely too long to release updates to thwart problems like these. There needs to be a way that updates can be pushed automatically by Google so that Android users don’t have to stay behind the curve on the security front.

The problem with Google

If posting on Reddit ultimately results in a faster response to malware problems on the Android Market than going through the official channels, there is a problem. Google works really hard on their OS and innovates in an many great ways, but there are basic quality-assurance measures that need to be met in order to provide a service that is safe. This crisis has been averted thanks to Google’s quick reply to Aaron but what would have happened if someone didn’t post it on Reddit and weren’t able to reach out to someone with a Google contact?

Here is the list of malicious applications that were removed:

  • Falling Down
  • Super Guitar Solo
  • Super History Eraser
  • Photo Editor
  • Super Ringtone Maker
  • Super Sex Positions
  • Hot Sexy Videos
  • Chess
  • 下坠滚球_Falldown
  • Hilton Sex Sound
  • Screaming Sexy Japanese Girls
  • Falling Ball Dodge
  • Scientific Calculator
  • Dice Roller
  • 躲避弹球
  • Advanced Currency Converter
  • App Uninstaller
  • 几何战机_PewPew
  • Funny Paint
  • Spider Man
  • 蜘蛛侠


Via Android Police and Reddit