The Google Play Store is flooded with more than 600,000 Android apps, at present. With more than 1.5 billion app downloads a month and projected sales of over $804.3 million developers have much to cheer about. Android has come a long way and is aggressively geared to reach the top spot challenging other major players of the app-world like Apple.
As per a recent report by ABI Research, Android will dominate smartphone app downloads in 2013. What makes Android truly remarkable? Innovation, creativity and performance producing smart apps for demanding users and competitive economy. Not only smartphone but Android tablets too are contributing in tremendously to expand Android’s existing user base.
However, there is one sad update for Android lovers. Around 32 Android apps have lately been affected by the BadNews bug found in the Google App Store. The bug steals cash by increasing the charges for sending premium text messages.
Besides, the bug does 2 things, which can harm your Android phone badly:
- Fake alerts so you download other infected apps such as AlphaSMS
- Sends sensitive information such as your Android device’s phone number and unique device id (IMIE) to malware source
The affected Android phones belong to Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and other countries in Eastern Europe. Lookout Mobile Security Firm stated in a blog post that a number of apps were carrying the BadNews bug. The bug was sitting inside recipe generators, games, wallpaper apps and pornographic programmes. Lookout has published a complete list of all affected apps, with most of them belonging to Russian users.
Though Google has not yet released any official comment on the matter it has suspended all infected accounts and removed the infected apps. Lookout further said that the bug portrayed itself as an aggressive advertising network to escape detection and damaging behavior.
The bug urged users to install a programme called AlphaSMS to send text messages to premium numbers. In the process, making or rather stealing credit from users. Users had no choice but to download AlphaSMS as it was featured as an important update to run Skype or Vkontakte (Russian social network).
As of now the exact number of affected phones has not been detected but figures from Google Play suggest that between 2,000,000 to 9,000,000 copies of apps trapped with BadNews bug seemed to have been downloaded from the store.
The situation seems to be under control with Android actively looking into the matter, it is hard to predict the exact damage the bug has caused. Nevertheless, here’s an article resource for you to detect any such malware into your Android phones – Report Bugs. The article will give you practical ways and means to report bugs as soon as they are detected on your Android phone.
Well the good news is that Android is still holding the first position among operating systems. As per a survey by Gartner, Android shipments are expected to reach roughly 861 million units in 2013, increasing to 1.47 million units in 2017. Followed by Apple and Windows, it will be interesting to see what lengths will Android go to maintain its dominance?