San Francisco, June 12: For the past six months, more than 60,000 Android apps disguised as legitimate applications have quietly installed adware on mobile devices while remaining undetected.

According to cybersecurity firm Bitdefender, to date, it has discovered 60,000 completely different samples (unique apps) carrying the adware and suspects there is much more in the wild, reports BleepingComputer. ChatGPT Update: OpenAI Introduced ‘Drag and Drop’ Support to Its Immensely Popular AI Chatbot on iOS.

Starting in October 2022, the campaign distributed fake security software, game cracks, cheats, VPN software, Netflix, and utility apps through third-party sites.

Users in the US are primarily targeted, followed by South Korea, Brazil, Germany, the UK, and France.

Moreover, the report showed that the malicious apps are hosted on third-party websites in Google Search that push APKs, Android packages that allow users to manually install mobile apps, rather than on Google Play.

When users visit the sites, they will either be redirected to advertisements or prompted to download the app they are looking for.

The download sites are specifically designed to distribute malicious Android apps as APKs, which, when installed, infect Android devices with adware, the report said. Sam Altman Meets PM Modi: CEO of ChatGPT Maker OpenAI Discusses India’s Tech Ecosystem and Benefits of AI With Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Meanwhile, Google has removed 32 malicious extensions from the Chrome Web Store, totalling 75 million downloads, that could alter search results and push spam or unwanted ads.

The extensions included legitimate functionality to keep users unaware of the malicious behaviour, which was delivered in obfuscated code.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jun 12, 2023 01:52 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website