Technology

Warning over 23 crafty Android apps that record you through your camera – delete them NOW

More than 20 apps that secretly track people through their phones have been exposed by cybersecurity experts.

Disguised as legitimate apps for activities like yoga, dodgy downloads record video and audio and steal contacts, pictures, messages, etc.

Researchers have revealed more than 23 crafty apps on the Google Play Store

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Researchers have revealed more than 23 crafty apps on the Google Play StoreCredit: Alamy

That’s because they are loaded with PhoneSpy, a software that specializes in snooping on sly people, researchers from Zimperium The report.

In a blog post published last week, the US security firm revealed that more than 1,000 Android users have been infected with the newly discovered malware.

In total, 23 PhoneSpy apps were unearthed. They are not available on the Play Store, Google’s official app store for billions of phones using the Android operating system.

Instead, they are believed to be transmitted from one device to another via sophisticated links sent in emails or text messages.

The infected devices are all based in South Korea, although the researchers do not rule out the possibility that the infection has taken place in other countries.

“These malicious Android apps are designed to run in the background, continuously monitoring their victims without arousing suspicion,” wrote Zimperium researcher Aazim Yaswant.

“We believe that the malicious actors responsible for PhoneSpy have collected a substantial amount of personal and corporate information about their victims, including private photos and communications.”

PhoneSpy apps were identified by the team as apps for learning yoga, viewing photos, watching TV, and other activities.

Once on a device, the malware gains access to the user’s camera, GPS location, text messages, phone book, and more.

It can also pin passwords for your Facebook, Instagram and Google accounts.

Malware can be spread by using infected devices to send malicious links to contacts stored on them.

Based on Zimperium, it is possible that the victims knew each other or were connected through work or other relationships.

The security company is not sure who is behind the attacks. It notified and sent all relevant threat data to US and South Korean authorities.

To avoid catching PhonySpy or similar malware, be wary of installing apps outside of the Play Store.

Google’s app marketplace has security checks in place to block most malware from reaching its pages.

Apps from third-party stores are not necessarily subject to the same degree of scrutiny, making them a risky download.

Fraudsters can use spyware to record you through your cell phone's camera

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Fraudsters can use spyware to record you through your cell phone’s cameraCredit: Getty
I found a WhatsApp scam that can hit you in seconds – don’t forget this

In other news, a 75 year old Englishman said about his anger after WhatsApp scammers tricked him into sending them hundreds of pounds.

Google Chrome users are being warned to delete the browser over concerns highly sensitive data is being collected.

Facebook has announced that it is changing its name to “Meta”.

The company is working to Create a lifelike avatar of users that they can control in a virtual world known as the “metaverse”.


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https://www.the-sun.com/tech/4068378/warning-dodgy-google-play-apps-record-camera-delete-now/ | Warning over 23 crafty Android apps that record you through your camera – delete them NOW

TaraSubramaniam

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