Google has removed 43 malicious applications from the Play Store after it was discovered the apps drain users’ phone batteries. Android users have received notifications asking them to review their installed apps and also remove questionable apps from their devices.
According to a report by security experts at MacAfee, the applications which already had 2.5 million downloads before their removal from the Play Store were found to potentially drain the phone battery health. The apps would consume user data while the mobile device was off and were capable of serving ads even when the phone was idle. To avoid easy detection, the ads would remain dormant for a while after initial installation.
Some of the apps identified by McAfee include TV/DMB Player, Music Downloader, News, and Calendar applications. It is important to check if you have any of the said applications installed and remove them immediately.
MacAfee has also urged users to be mindful of the permissions they grant apps. Part of a statement released by the research team reads, “While these permissions might be required for certain legitimate functionalities for running in the background, it is important to consider the potential risks linked with them, such as enabling hidden behaviors or reducing the relevance of ads and contents displayed to users because of the hidden Clicker behavior.”
In addition, you should avoid downloading apps from unknown sources and strictly install apps from the Google Play Store. You can check additional tips on how you can best protect yourself from malicious apps here.