Statistics say that Android malware and aggressive adware is on the rise, so the fact that researchers occasionally find some of it on legitimate online app markets should not come as a surprise to anyone.
The latest one spotted is Password Wifi Hacker Plus, an app offered for download on the Amazon Appstore for Android that supposedly allows users to crack passwords of nearby Wi-Fi networks.
But the truth is that it isn’t capable of doing that and simply shows fake dialog boxes to keep up the charade and prevent the user to delete it.
What the app actually does is help six different advertising network components to harvest and send user and device information to the networks, display ads, add bookmarks to the user’s browser, and so on.
Apple has been notified of its presence in its store, but as I’m writing this, the app is still available for download. Let’s hope they remove it soon.
The researchers pointed out that keeping an app store free of malicious applications can be a hard task, especially when it comes to fake or misleading applications since “it is not always obvious whether they do what they claim to do.”