If you currently have an Android phone, be careful when downloading new apps. Thirteen Android apps contain a Trojan virus called Android Counterclank. When an app containing this virus has been downloaded, information can be collected form a user’s phone, and a user’s home page may be changed as well. Right now, only thirteen apps have been found to contain this virus, though many other apps could contain similarly harmful viruses.
Unfortunately, Android apps are more susceptible to viruses than iOS or BlackBerry apps for various reeasons. This often means that a downloaded app could contain a harmful virus of some sort. While there are some ways to determine whether or not an app is safe for download, this isn’t always a possibility.
Detecting a Safe Download
The first thing that you can do to ensure a safe app download is to look at the name of the app developer. If you recognize a large developer, chances are that the app you are about to download is safer than most. If the developer has never been heard of (and you can’t find any reviews or articles related to this developer), you might want to skip that app. Another way to tell if an app will attack your phone is to think about the app you are about to download.
Most of the app names on that list of thirteen harmful apps have risquГ© titles or are of the screensaver/alarm/noise sort. Typically, apps that promise “hundreds of original ringtones” or “unique wallpapers for your phone” are not reliable apps – this is not always true, but it is the case most of the time. Lastly, take a good look at the permissions that an app requests. If those permissions seem to be over the top, it might be best to leave that app alone. You can also stick to apps that have been reviewed by a number of different blogs and magazines.
Five Million Impacted
Five million Android users have downloaded at least one of the infected apps. If your phone is currently acting strange, you might be dealing with an infection. If this happens, you can bring your phone to the nearest kiosk and get your phone fixed. Reputable apps shouldn’t change your browser’s home page, your home page, or mess with any other setting on your phone (unless, of course, that’s the purpose of the app).
If you feel tempted to download that new ringtone or set up a strange background, take a look around this site to find apps that are safe. Because Android apps are not as stringently reviewed as iOS or BlackBerry apps, it’s easy for Android users to download harmful apps (and for those seeking to damage phones to release harmful apps). The best way to avoid downloading any kind of damaging app is to make sure that you know what you’re downloading by reviewing the information listed above. Otherwise, you run the risk of downloading an Android app that could harm your phone for good.