It’s not always easy to spot a malicious app before downloading it.
There are tons of shady downloads available on the Google Play Store that are filled with viruses and malware.
Hackers use them to break into people’s devices and steal their passwords or online banking credentials.
Just this week we reported on cyber crooks using a sneaky method to prevent millions of Android victims from removing their virus-infected apps.
They were all on the Google Play Store until experts revealed them.
So what should you look out for when downloading an app?
Adrianus Warmenhoven, Cyber Security Expert NordVPNgives some useful tips.
Check the reviews
Further down the page you can see app feedback that can be very useful.
“It sounds obvious, but users monitor the apps they use all the time and aren’t afraid to alert others if they find problems,” explains Warmenhoven.
How many downloads did it have?
Claims about big numbers when the app is brand new can also be a red flag of sorts.
“There have been cases where scammers have manipulated the download numbers, so if an app has been downloaded millions of times but has only been released for a few days, you should definitely take a look,” reveals the expert.
See the permissions
Developers must specify exactly what things they need to access on your phone in the Google Play Store description in order to work.
If it needs any weird permissions, that could be a bad sign.
“Be careful when an app asks for permissions it doesn’t need,” warns Warmenhoven.
“No flashlight app needs to know your location.”
He adds: “For added protection, use a virtual private network so all internet traffic from your phone and computer is encrypted and secure.”
The Google Play Store app description also states who created the app.
Is it a name you know and trust?
You can click on the name and it will show you all the other apps they have made. Check them out and see if there have been any complaints about them in the reviews.
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/9390841/signs-dangerous-apps-android-google-play-store-2/ Android Warning – four red flags that could mean an app is spying on you