Malicious Android apps with Clicker malware have been spotted by cybersecurity researchers because 16 apps with 20 million downloads were on the Google Play Store – and they can drain your phone’s battery life.
Discovered by McAfee Mobile Security (opens in a new tab), researchers found that malicious code had sneaked into a number of utility apps, which hackers often use to trick users into downloading. These include apps like QR readers, flashlights, unit converters, task managers, and more.
This led to around 20 million downloads, with the apps cloaking ad fraud features so attackers could make a profit without the user’s knowledge. This is done through a clicker trojan, which constantly establishes connections to websites and generates revenue through fake clicks on pay-per-click bases.
As McAfee’s security team points out, “It’s mostly about visiting websites that are delivered by FCM message and browsing them successively in the background while mimicking user behavior.” Unfortunately, this will lead to high data usage and even drain your device’s battery under the user’s nose – all for the threat actor to make money.
For those who have noticed that their phone’s battery life is not as long as it used to be, it could be due to these apps.
Delete these apps
Although McAfee has already informed Google about the malicious apps and they are no longer available on Google Play, that does not mean that they may not be installed on your phone. It’s a good idea to remove the Android apps listed below, especially if it increases your smartphone’s battery life and performance.
- High Speed Camera – com.hantor.CozyCamera
- Smart Task Manager – com.james.SmartTaskManager
- Flashlight+ – kr.caramel.flash_plus
- 달력메모장 – com.smh.memocalendar
- Dictionary K – com.joysoft.wordBook
- BusanBus – com.kmshack.BusanBus
- Flashlight + – com.candlencom.candleprotest
- Quick Note – com.movinapp.quicknote
- Currency converter – com.smartwho.SmartCurrencyConverter
- Joycode – com.joysoft.barcode
- EzDica – com.joysoft.ezdica
- Instagram Profile Downloader – com.schedulezero.instapp
- Ez Notes – com.meek.tingboard
- 손전등 – com.candlencom.flashlite
- 계산기 – com.doubleline.calculation
- Flashlight + – com.dev.imagevault
Stay away from suspicious apps
Unfortunately, a number of malware-infested apps are coming to the Google Play Store, which means it’s a good idea to use one of the best antivirus apps to keep malicious actors at bay. This includes an imitation WhatsApp on Android that uses malware to steal your account, as well as malware-infested Android apps that steal money.
Although these apps are advertised on trusted platforms, that does not mean that they can be trusted. Be aware of the apps you download on Android and stick to official apps to stay away from any malware threat. It’s also a good idea to know what to watch out for, from spyware and ransomware to adware.
Looking for the phones with the best battery life to ensure no malware can make a significant dent in it? We have what you need.