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Google bans 150 malicious apps. Millions of Android users must delete them or pay the price

Google has banned more than 100 apps from its Play Store in what is considered one of the worst discoveries for Android users. The latest set of apps that will be removed from the Store have been found for displaying malicious malware called “UltimaSMS”.

The SMS scam of these applications was able to entrap unsuspecting users of the premium services, which cost Android owners about $40 per month to download without getting anything. The fraud was discovered by technology experts at the information security company AVAST, as Google immediately blocked the applications as soon as it was informed of the threat.

However, this new ban may come too late for some, as the apps are believed to have been downloaded millions of times before they were removed.

To maximize the success of deceiving users, the apps claimed to offer popular services including dedicated keyboards, QR code scanners, video and photo editing software, blocking spam calls, camera filters, and games.

Applications contain malicious software targeting Android phone users (Reuters)

According to Avast, the app’s developers have promoted the apps through ads on social networks such as TikTok and Instagram, all of which have helped boost their popularity.

Once downloaded, the apps immediately begin checking the user’s device location, International Mobile Identification Number (IMEI), and phone number to determine the language in which the scam will be displayed.

When the user opens the app, they are required to enter their phone number and in some cases their email address as well, in order to use the apps advertised purposes. If sent, this step registers the user for a subscription to the SMS service.

Although there are good user reviews about the apps on the Google Play Store, many users have a lot of negative reviews and have openly said in their reviews that the apps are scams.

Unfortunately, it appears that children are most vulnerable to these scams, judging by the reviews in the app’s profiles.

Avast says that Android users should disable the premium SMS options with their networks to avoid falling victim to this scam, as registering in it without the victim’s knowledge will expose him to losing money.

In addition, Avast advises mobile users to check reviews carefully before downloading any apps, because fraud apps often enhance their presence on the Store by showing good user ratings, the user should not be deceived by these reviews and read the details of the application.

Even when you download an app, it’s wise to keep personal information, such as phone numbers or email addresses, and only share it with apps you really trust.

You can find out which applications are in the block list by pressing this Link.

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Reference-www.aljazeera.net

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