The “PhoneSpy” malware has been spotted in 23 Android apps. None of those apps are available via the Google Play Store, though. None of them have been mentioned by name in the 91mobiles report either. It is also worth noting that this particular malware is majorly active in the US and Korea.
‘PhoneSpy’ malware has been found in 23 Android apps
This malware is also quite common to be found in apps outside the Play Store. It usually lies in apps that pretend to be legit well-known apps, which users download to avoid paying for them.
This malware is capable of stealing crucial data from your smartphone, including messages, images, calls, and it can even remotely access your phone’s location.
If granted other app permissions, it can also access the complete list of installed apps, record audio, and video, while accessing the microphone at the same time. It can even get its hands on device information such as IMEI number, device name, and brand.
This malware was spotted by Zimperium, a mobile security agency. It is said that the app infected by this malware is capable of uninstalling any user-installed applications, that includes mobile security apps.
It’s best to stick to verified, legit app stores
So, as you can see, ‘PhonySpy’ can do a lot of damage if you let it. What’s the best way to protect yourself? Well, download apps from the Google Play Store. If you have to, also use other legit app stores, and trusted sources.
Sideloading random APKs that you found who knows where just to avoid paying for an app can get you into quite a bit of trouble. PhoneSpy is just an example of malware that lurks in such apps, there are many more out there.
So, if you have to sideload an app, be very careful while you do it. Make sure that it comes from a trusted source, and that it has been verified in one way or the other. For most people, though, it would be best just to stick to the Google Play Store and other trusted app stores.