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Over 500,000 Android Users Downloaded a New Joker Malware App from Play Store

Over 500,000 Android Users Downloaded a New Joker Malware App from Play Store

December 19, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A malicious Android app with more than 500,000 downloads from the Google Play app store has been found hosting malware that stealthily exfiltrates users' contact lists to an attacker-controlled server and signs up users to unwanted paid premium subscriptions without their knowledge. The latest Joker malware was found in a messaging-focused app named  Color Message  ("com.guo.smscolor.amessage"), which has since been removed from the official app marketplace. In addition, it has been observed simulating clicks in order to generate revenue from malicious ads and connecting to servers located in Russia. Color Message "accesses users' contact list and exfiltrates it over the network [and] automatically subscribes to unwanted paid services," mobile security firm Pradeo  noted . "To make it difficult to be removed, the application has the capability to hides it icon once installed." "We is [sic] committed to ensuring that the app is as useful
Joker Malware Apps Once Again Bypass Google's Security to Spread via Play Store

Joker Malware Apps Once Again Bypass Google's Security to Spread via Play Store

July 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers took the wraps off yet another instance of Android malware hidden under the guise of legitimate applications to stealthily subscribe unsuspecting users for premium services without their knowledge. In a report published by Check Point research today, the malware — infamously called Joker (or Bread) — has found another trick to bypass Google's Play Store protections: obfuscate the malicious DEX executable inside the application as Base64 encoded strings, which are then decoded and loaded on the compromised device. Following responsible disclosure by Check Point researchers, the 11 apps ( list and hashes here ) in question were removed by Google from the Play Store on April 30, 2020. "The Joker malware is tricky to detect, despite Google's investment in adding Play Store protections," said Check Point 's Aviran Hazum, who identified the new modus operandi of Joker malware. "Although Google removed the malicious apps from the P
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