Security researchers have discovered nearly 100 malicious apps in both the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store. The apps, which have been downloaded 13 million times, contain adware and are known to be involved in the Scylla ad scam campaign. This ad fraud scheme aims to make money by displaying unwanted visible and hidden advertisements on mobile devices. The ads are triggered when the user clicks on ads or certain locations – and even by simply unlocking the phone screen.
What is Scylla adware?
Scylla is the latest generation of the ad scam known as Poseidon, previously superseded by Charybdis. Scylla impersonates legitimate apps and can launch intrusive ads in the background of mobile devices. Scylla collects data on ad clicks even when the phone is idle, so the user doesn’t notice anything suspicious. In addition, its software code can also be used to proliferate malware on the user’s device, such as: B. ransomware.
Malicious apps listed below have been removed from Google Play Store and App Store. If you have previously installed them on your device, Make sure you uninstall them.
Delete these malicious apps!
- Loot the castle
- Execute bridge
- Shining Gun
- Racing Legend 3D
- rope runner
- wall of fire
- Ninja critical hit
- Tony is walking
What if your device is infected with Scylla and Charybdis?
Ad fraud apps can do the following on your device:
- Display a large number of unwanted ads and notifications
- Drain the phone battery
- Increase internet or mobile data usage
- Attackers benefit from hidden ads that count the malicious app as “seen” because it reports to advertising platforms that it has shown the user an ad – even if the user never did
- Collect actual clicks or taps on a mobile device from users and forward this information as fake ad clicks to advertisers to earn money
- Delete malware and install malicious app extensions and ransomware
Tips to protect yourself from this ad scam
Here are the best practices to prevent your devices from being compromised by this malware:
- Always make sure your mobile device operating system is up to date.
- Be careful when installing applications. Install only from official stores, check publisher legitimacy and read app reviews.
- Be skeptical about an app requiring device permissions.
- Use strong passwords or install password manager apps to protect login information.
- Install antivirus software on mobile devices such as Trend Micro Mobile Security.
How can Trend Micro protect you?
Trend Micro Mobile Security offers comprehensive protection against malware hidden in apps. Its real-time security scanning feature offers the most comprehensive anti-malware capabilities available. It also offers a pre-installation scan feature that prevents malicious apps and malware on Google Play before you can install them.
You can install Trend Micro Security for Android by following the instructions here.