Joker, one of the most persistent malware that continually targets Android devices is back. Reported by Quick Heal Security Labs a new batch of 8 Joker malware-laced apps on Google Play Store. Google has removed these apps from PlayStore, but they will continue to stay on users Android phones till deleted.
Quick Heal Security Labs claims that malware authors spread these malware applications on the Google Play Store in scanner applications, wallpaper applications, message applications
These types of applications can quickly become a target. Users are advised to avoid such applications and use only those that are trusted.
The Joker malware manages to sneak back on The Play Store by changing its code, execution method, and/or its payload-retrieving techniques. Essentially, this malware is always evolving making it almost impossible to boot out once and for all.
According to the Quick Heal report, at launch, these applications ask for notification access, which is used to get notification data. The application then goes on to take SMS data from notification, and asks for Contacts access.
When the access is provided, the app makes and manages phone call permission. After that, it continues to work without showing any visible malicious activity to the user.
Researchers say that the Joker malware steals users’ data including SMS, contact list data, device information, OTPs, and more.
Even though Google removed apps from PlayStore so you cannot download them anymore, however, if you have already downloaded them, they will still be on your device and you need to manually uninstall and delete them.
The 8 apps you need to delete right away are:
1. Auxiliary Message
2. Fast Magic SMS
3. Free CamScanner
4. Super Message
5. Element Scanner
6. Go Messages
7. Travel Wallpapers
8. Super SMS
Since the Joker malware keeps coming back to the Play Store, you can also follow some regular safe practices to avoid dodgy apps that might carry malware. Always check app ratings and app reviews before you download them.
If you see a lot of complaints in the reviews, steer away from the app. Also, if you see reviews glorifying the app excessively despite the ratings being very low, those reviews are fake, you should stay away from these apps too, this app could be laced with Joker malware