It’s been a terrible couple of weeks for Android users. In the last month alone, Google was forced to remove over 50 apps from its Play Store after it was found that they contained malicious malware that could sign people up for expensive subscriptions without their knowledge. Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, there are now another 13 apps to add to the list, and the millions of people who downloaded them will want to click the delete button ASAP.
Discovered by McAfee’s security team, this latest batch of malicious software has the ability to fill devices with endless and highly intrusive ads that pop up continuously and take up the entire screen.
Once downloaded, they immediately install this annoying adware that is almost impossible to stop. To make matters worse, some of the apps automatically change their name and icon, making them much more difficult to track down and remove from a device.
It seems that most of these applications are disguised as phone cleaner apps that aim to rid devices of unwanted software and errors. In reality, however, they do exactly the opposite.
In order to boost their download counts, the cyber thieves have pasted these apps on social media websites and it seems that some of them have been installed over a million times.
READ MORE: Google Just BANNED 50 Android Apps! Check your phone and erase them now
Here are all the apps deleted by Google now. If you have any of these installed, it is important that you find and remove them immediately.
• Junk Cleaner – Over 1 million downloads
• EasyCleaner – Over 100,000 downloads
• Power Doctor – Over 500,000 downloads
• Super clean – over 500,000 downloads
• Completely clean – over 1 million downloads
• Fingertip cleaner – over 500,000 downloads
• Quick Cleaner – Over 1 million downloads
• Stay clean – over 1 million downloads
• Windy Clean – Over 500,000 downloads
• Carpet cleaning – over 100,000 downloads
• Cool Clean – Over 500,000 downloads
• Powerful cleaning – Over 500,000 downloads
• Meteor Clean – Over 100,000 downloads
According to McAfee telemetry data, this malware and its variants affect a variety of countries, including mainly South Korea, Japan, and Brazil, but it has also been detected in the UK and the US.
About the new threat, McAfee said: “McAfee’s Mobile Research Team has identified new malware in the Google Play Store. Most of them disguise themselves as cleaner apps that clear junk files or help optimize their batteries for device management. However, this malware hides itself and continuously delivers advertisements to the victims. Furthermore, upon installation, they automatically run malicious services without running the app.
“We have already reported this threat to Google and all reported applications have been removed from the Play Store.”