Google has removed the 13 dangerous auto-rooting adware applications (apps) below from their Play Store that are a part of the Brain Test, Shedun, ShiftyBug and Shuanet family of malware. The 13 malicious apps, which have already been downloaded by thousands of users around the world, will check if the mobile device they are running on have been rooted, and if the devices are, will attempt to gain root privileges or access to them. Rooting is the process of allowing users of smartphones, tablets and other devices running the Android mobile operating system to attain privileged control (known as root access). Once the apps have gained root privileges or access, they will copy themselves to the system partition of the Android operating system where system applications are stored, which will make them virtual impossible to remove, even if a Factory Reset is done or the "Uninstall" option in the Android operating system is used. The developers of the malicious apps trick their potential victims into downloading and installing them, by hiding them in full functioning games that are fun to play.
The 13 Dangerous Apps That Were Removed From the Google Play Store
- Cake Blast (com.zhtt.cakeblast)
- Jump Planet (com.galaxy.jumpplanet)
- Honey Comb (com.sweet.honeycomb)
- Crazy Block (com.crazy.block)
- Crazy Jelly (com.crazy.sugar)
- Tiny Puzzle (com.dot.tinypuzzle)
- Ninja Hook (com.sunshine.ninja)
- Piggy Jump (com.stupid.piggyjump)
- Just Fire (com.tomtom.justfire)
- Eat Bubble (com.fine.eatbubble)
- Hit Planet (com.smile.hitplanet)
- Cake Tower (com.beautiful.caketower)
- Drag Box (com.block.dragbox)
The malicious apps can allow the developers access to the mobile devices that they are running on, which will allow the developers (cyber-criminals) to use the mobile devices fraudulently.
Android users should check their mobile devices for the list of malicious apps above and attempt to remove them. For those Android users who are unable to remove the malicious apps after doing a Factory Reset or using the “Uninstalled” option, should know that best alternative to removing the malicious apps, is to reflash the ROM supplied by the mobile device maker.
Android users should ensure that they have a trusted antivirus or anti-malware software on their mobile devices, which will help protect them against malicious apps. Also, they should be cautious when downloading apps from the Google Play Store, even if the apps that they want to download have good reviews or high ratings.