Google banned three dangerous fraudulent mobile phone apps in a crackdown on crooks.
Apps attempt to scam users of money by imitating genuine applications.
However, they are actually riddled with trojans that can hijack your information or start paid subscriptions without the user asking.
One of them has a bug called Joker, which can avoid Google security detection.
Which apps have the joker bug?
The dangerous bug was found on three apps: Style Message, Blood Pressure App and Camera PDF Scanner.
Others, however, are also imitated to gain user trust, including GameBeyond, Tubemate, Minecraft, GTA5, and Vidmate.
What was said?
Igor Golovin from Kaspersky said: “Most apps are completely lacking in legitimate features.
“They start subscribing right after launch, while the user sees a loading window.
“They usually pay for legitimate services on behalf of a user and scammers take a cut of the money charged.
“These types of subscription fees tend to be taken from the phone’s balance.”
Trojan-containing apps are regularly removed from the store, but criminals are quick to replace them and imitate popular brands and names.
According to experts, cyber crooks download real apps and add malicious code before re-uploading them from App Store under a pseudonym.
Once the app is installed on your phone, it will try to access text messages and other notifications to gather information.
Joker’s victims were mainly in Saudi Arabia (21.20%), Poland (8.98%) and Germany (6.01%).
How to avoid having bugs on your phone?
Experts say to be wary of downloading apps from unofficial sources and be careful of certain apps on Google Play.
Mr Golovin said: “Read reviews, learn about the developer, terms of service and payment.
“For messaging, choose a well-known app with positive reviews.
“Even if you trust an app, you should avoid granting it too many permissions.
“Allow access to notifications only for applications that need it to fulfill their purposes, for example, to forward notifications to portable devices.
“Apps for something like themed wallpapers or photo editing don’t need access to your notifications.”