Android Smartphone

Android applications are often targets of malware. Recently, 13 applications were identified as being infected with malware called Xamalicious. This article explores the details of this threat and the list of affected applications and offers practical tips for protecting your Android smartphone.

In today’s interconnected world, our phones are more than just devices; they have become an extension of ourselves. With this growing dependence comes a major concern: security. Recently, a series of Android apps have been identified as a serious threat to user security. These applications, distributed via the Google Play Store, were infected by malware called Xamalicious. This article takes an in-depth look at this issue and provides essential information about these dangerous apps.

The discovery of malicious malware

A Digital Trojan Horse

McAfee Mobile researchers discovered that Xamalicious malware was hidden in 25 Android apps, affecting various categories such as gaming, health, horoscopes, and productivity​​. These apps used social engineering tactics to gain extensive access privileges on users’ devices, often without their consent. Once these privileges were granted, the malware could take full control of the device and perform malicious actions.

Social engineering techniques

Xamalicious tricks users into granting accessibility permissions to the malicious app. These permissions allow access to features normally reserved for the operating system​​. The malware can then connect to a remote server, deploy malicious code to the phone, and access the user’s personal data.

The consequences of infection by xamalicious

Once active, Xamalicious can carry out a range of fraudulent actions without the user’s knowledge. This includes:

  • Automatically clicking on ads to generate ad revenue for hackers.
  • Installing other unwanted apps.
  • Potentially extorting money from the user​​​​.

Risk to personal data

In addition to taking control of the device, Xamalicious also takes over the user’s personal data, including the list of installed applications, information about the device and operating system, location, and data on the SIM card​.

List of infected applications to uninstall

Android users must check their apps and uninstall infected ones immediately. Here is the list of 13 affected applications, all removed from the Google Play Store but which may still be found on certain devices:

  • Essential Horoscope for Android
  • 3D Skin Editor for PE Minecraft
  • Logo Maker Pro
  • Auto Click Repeater
  • Count Easy Calorie Calculator
  • Sound Volume Extender
  • LetterLink
  • Step Keeper: Easy Pedometer
  • Track Your Sleep
  • Sound Volume Booster
  • Astrological Navigator: Daily Horoscope & Tarot
  • Universal Calculator

These apps have been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times, highlighting the extent of the risk to users​​​​​​.

Security measures for android users

To protect against such threats, users should:

  • Regularly check the permissions granted to applications.
  • Install a reliable antivirus on their Android device.
  • Download apps only from trusted sources such as the Google Play Store.
  • Regularly update their operating system and applications to benefit from the latest security measures.

The importance of vigilance

This situation highlights the need for constant vigilance on the part of smartphone users. With online threats constantly evolving, it’s crucial to stay informed and take proactive steps to protect your data and device.

The discovery of Xamalicious malware in Android apps is a powerful reminder of the fragility of our digital security. As we increasingly integrate our smartphones into our daily lives, the threat of malware like Xamalicious cannot be ignored. By following security tips and remaining vigilant, users can effectively protect their devices and personal data from these insidious digital threats.


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