Popular Android Market app snatches private data

Popular Android Market app snatches private data
If an Android app by Jackeey Wallpaper has been living on your handset, it shouldn't have. Those Hello Kitty pictures are actually containing malicious code that collects things from your phone that no wallpaper app should be messing with in the first place. The wallpapers have been downloaded over a million times already.

The mobile software security company Lookout has found this while analyzing thousands of free iPhone and Android apps. Jackeey Wallpaper collects pretty substantial stuff like your browsing history, text messages, your SIM card data, subscriber ID and voicemail password. The worst part is that it also sends these bits of private information to a server in Shenzhen, China, and only a dedicated few know what happens with them afterwards.

source: MobileBeat via AndroidCentral


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24 Comments

1. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

I sure am glad I use my N-1's stock wallpapers. Holy shi*t this is exactly the reason why apple has a good argument for their walled garden approach to apps. Amd to make it worse it's going to the information Capital of the world, CHINA! where all info is safe...yeah... Between this and all the other android apps with malicious code I've read about in the past 2 months(5 other than this), I'm getting a little wary about downloading apps on my nexus. The worst part is these wallpaper apps are in the market! Not from some third-party site, the android market! Google can keep the "open" if they want, if security means apple app store only then my nexus won't be seeing any new apps for a while.

13. bitslizer

Posts: 27; Member since: Jul 29, 2010

I'm sorry, i think that just totally wrong, as appearant that some 12 years old managed to snuck a iPhone tethering app on to apple's app store, other could just as well have snuck on malicious code into other app. That's why there are remote kill switches(both on andriod and iOS), time for google to pull out the hammer on this i think, at least it will prevent further spread of this thing

2. mega77

Posts: 6; Member since: Jun 14, 2010

Sorry to say but Google needs to make some changes quickly.

4. der614

Posts: 13; Member since: Jul 24, 2009

That what im saying. People give apple a hard time about the way they do things as far as the way apps are approved but it really cuts down on these type of things that are going on. Im thinking because this has happened, that apple may pull that app from the store

10. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

@der614 what apple app are you referring to them pulling?

14. der614

Posts: 13; Member since: Jul 24, 2009

Jackeey wallpaper

3. der614

Posts: 13; Member since: Jul 24, 2009

Wow I love android but this is really getting out of hand with the random installing of pictures on my phone that collects data. ive had times where i would go into my photo gallery and their would be strange picutres in there and not knowing where they are coming from. But now i know that some of the apps I download are placing them there. What makes it worse is that i have Lookout scanning each app that gets downloaded and it does daily checks and it says that all apps are safe but i guess it cant catch everything. Im not speaking about apple cause i dont own a iphone. but i think that its great that android is open but with stuff that happens i kinda wish they would tighten it down a little more and not let it be so free lance because i kinda got a feeling that something bad may happen within android that will effect alot of its users because of how easly google approves apps into their store.

5. hawk62

Posts: 320; Member since: Nov 21, 2009

Yup apple does it right. But the vz fanboys will jump all over this again. Last time i said the same thing as what u just said and all the ppl jealous they don't have an iphone still crapped on apple. Ps i have had my X for 3 days and the android market has nothing on apple. The apple games are so much better

6. vzw fanman

Posts: 1977; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

even if google "approved it", they wouldn't have noticed anything was wrong. the program could receive an update that lets the program do this after the initial release.....you play games on a 3.5 inch screen? if you want a mobile gaming experience, get a psp.

9. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010

just got my droid x yeesterday and i love it! i had the 3g ipod for a year now and i will admit that the games are better. but i also love how android has customization apps wit can take android phones to a whole different level. and plus android is coming out with alot of new games that i have seen on the app store

16. hawk62

Posts: 320; Member since: Nov 21, 2009

there's vzw fanman again. Yeah i play games-bejeweled 2, skeeball, battleship, yahtzee and many more. I dont want or need a psp. go back to being in love with moto v60! haha

17. vzw fanman

Posts: 1977; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

all of those games are in the android market. so i don't know what your talking about.

19. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

I wonder why you only assume VZW users are effected. You made no mention of Sprint, T-Mobile, or other ATT Android users. You came straight for the big kids. You got some kinda beef with us we don't know about? No matter what you say about IP games, the fact is people want the option of talking on their smart phones not just the most apps. Until that basic phone function can be done on a consistent basis, you have what's called an iPod Touch with Occasional Voice.

21. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

HAWK, I play SNES and GENESIS ROMS on my CAPTIVATE - rather have one item than several different ones. Makes like a little easier...+1

22. Cali_E

Posts: 196; Member since: Sep 24, 2008

my snes plays any super nintento game, i think that owns any game they release for iOS

23. Cali_E

Posts: 196; Member since: Sep 24, 2008

that and theyre making a ps1 emulator for android. SICK!!

7. xmguy1

Posts: 68; Member since: Nov 04, 2009

I only use wall paper of pics that I take. I may need to change from anti-virus to Lookout for virus protection. Especially since my Droid is rooted.

8. vzw fanman

Posts: 1977; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

i've used droids since november 9th, rooted of course, and i've never gotten a virus/spyware/malware. i install numerous apps and third party apps yet i still haven't gotten infected. i think the anti virus is overrated...

11. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

I never thought I'd need an antivirus for my cell phone. This is effin ridiculous. Google just needs to tighten up on it's app market. Scan and inspect not just the apps when they go to market but their updates too just like apple does. They can have the best of both worlds and have an open market with a strict review process like apple. And leave it to third-party sites for getting apps without the approval. Just don't have all the rules the app store approval process has and the only thing you lose is how fast your apps get in. Google really should be checking for quality and malicious code. Even in updates.

12. messiah

Posts: 438; Member since: Feb 19, 2010

The very reason for Google's China differences. I don't think Google needs anymore reason to feel the threat of personal information theft. How many Google employees had that wallpaper? Needless to say, the millions of android Fanbase that had it. Ideally, an apps as such is an assualt on personal info and industrial espionage for spying on company's trade secrets and comms via texting. I feel the threat, don't you?

15. THEOG

Posts: 20; Member since: Jul 12, 2010

I do to think they need to check out apps a little bet more that there putting online and not just give everyone a free pass. But this is the price you pay for being more open then apple. Just like windows. Still wouldn't trade it in for apple. Just dont like how they close everything down.

18. uk786

Posts: 47; Member since: Dec 30, 2009

Look at skyfire browser on android it knows everything you use it for!

20. erikiksaz

Posts: 170; Member since: Apr 22, 2010

It's the user's fault considering that the app had a set of system calls that had to be user approved before the download began.

24. Cali_E

Posts: 196; Member since: Sep 24, 2008

OH NO! PLEASE DONT CHECK MY VOICEMAIL!!! lol

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