Google has removed more than 60 apps from the Google Play store after security researchers found they were exposing children to hardcore pornography.
The cull came soon after Check Point found the malicious code lurking within apps and games that were specifically geared toward younger users.
The so-called AdultSwine malware, which displayed ‘highly inappropriate ads’ affected apps reportedly downloaded between 3 and 7 million times.
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Check Point says the “malicious code’s own ad library… contains ads of an offensive nature, including pornographic ads. All these are displayed to children while playing the game that the app is masquerading as.”
Here’s an example of a relatively mild image surfaced by the malware.
As well as showcasing inappropriate content, the malware also tries to trick users into downloading fake security apps, informing users they need to remove viruses.
The malware also attempts to lure unsuspecting patrons into registering for fake premium services.
“An experienced eye could easily foresee this tactic, though a child playing a game app is easy prey for such nefarious apps,” the researchers said.
Games like Fit Nights Survival Craft, McQueen Car Racing Game and Addon Pixelmon for MCPE are believed to be the most popular apps affected by AdultSwine.
In a statement (via Gizmodo), Google confirmed the apps have been removed from the Play Store.
The company said: “We’ve removed the apps from Play, disabled the developers’ accounts, and will continue to show strong warnings to anyone that has installed them. We appreciate Check Point’s work to help keep users safe.”
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