Spammers push cloned apps on Android Market

No stone is left unturned, no option unexplored when it comes to online spamming, and the latest approach has shown that malware authors are not the only ones who have taken advantage of the fact that Android apps are written in Java and are, therefore, easily cloned.

“We’ve been seeing a rash of repackaged applications posted on the official Android Market,” says an F-Secure researcher. “The repackaged application has the same modules as the original, but includes an advertisement module.”

He says that most of the spotted repackaged apps don’t have any malicious code in them, and they are all made available for download for free. This means that the “developers” of these apps must make money off the clicks on the advertisements.

But, as the researcher points out, most (if not all) of these apps were cloned without the permission of their original developers.

Whether or not they can sue the people behind the repackaged apps is another matter, but technically those people are committing theft of intellectual property.

I wonder if this is going to make Google reconsider a vetting process for new apps.