The Google Play Store is taking strict measures to filter out malicious applications but it looks like some still manage to crawl through those crevices. Case in point is a new, fake WhatsApp Android app that has already found its place in the Play Store and what is even more alarming is that the app has already accumulated more than 1 million downloads.
For those that own a smartphone, WhatsApp happens to be one of the most popular messaging applications that supports a slew of features such as voice and video calling, providing the complete communication package to its users, so it comes as no surprise that the download counter would reach this figure after a small amount of time.
The app’s official name was Update WhatsApp and though it is still found on the Google Play Store, it has a different name called Dual Whatsweb Update. Along with the name change, the icon has already been revamped but it was still able to achieve its goal of forcing users to commence the download.
According to Nikolaos Chrysaidos, who is a security researcher at anti-virus company Avast, states that the fake WhatsApp application was used to create revenue through ads that are displayed on the smartphone’s screen. Aside from this, the security researcher has spotted other applications such as a fake Facebook Messenger app and what is scary is that this particular app was downloaded 10 million times.
It is unclear as to what harm would be inflicted to owner’s devices but such applications are found on Google Play Store in order to force people to download them thinking they are getting the legitimate app installed on their devices.
The result, significant revenue generation for developers. Google needs to be more strict with its filtering process, but looking at the number of apps present on the store, the time could be extended to new heights.