Delete these fake Android apps right now, before they steal your money!

Delete these fake Android apps right now!
Google Play can be a scary place - scammers and hackers lurk in the shadows, waiting for you to download one of their fake apps. Google periodically removes such dangerous apps but this doesn’t mean that some of them didn’t find their way into your phone.

Cybersecurity software company Avast reported on a scam campaign that has been running for months. It’s called UltimaSMS, and, as the name suggests, fake apps are distributed through SMS to unsuspecting victims.

There are a total of 151 apps part of the scam campaign, and you can check out the full list here. The goal of the campaign is to enroll victims for expensive SMS services and leak money from their plans/accounts.

As you can see from the list, some of these apps look legit and can fool some people into thinking they’re useful tools. Downloading and installing one of them will let them check your phone’s location, IMEI, and number to get the country you’re in. Opening one of the fake apps will prompt a screen asking you to enter your phone number and/or email address.

The premium SMS service cost as much as $40 a month and you would be charged weekly until you figure out what’s going on.

“The apps discovered are essentially identical in structure, meaning the same base app structure is repurposed numerous times. These copies are disguised as genuine apps through well constructed app profiles on the Play Store. The profiles feature catchy photos and enticing app descriptions alongside often high review averages. However, upon closer inspection, they have generic privacy policy statements and feature basic developer profiles including generic email addresses. They also tend to have numerous negative reviews from users that correctly identified the apps as scams or have fallen for the scam,” the guys from Avast explained.

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To make matters worse, some of these apps were distributed through popular social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, among others.

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