Lately, new malicious encryption and/or code – known as Plankton – was identified on the Android Market creeping in and around various apps, thanks to a security researcher.

Surprisingly, it was found lurking inside some apps associated with Angry Birds. The one responsible for the code was smart enough to run it as a background service thus making it tough(er) to be detected. Once the malicious code gets on your device, its objective is to somehow hack your Android smartphone or tablet and give an unknown user access to your device remotely.

The malicious code was first identified by NC State University Computer Science professor Xuxian Jiang. Plankton is unlike any other code in that it does not utilize exploits in order to gain root access to the OS itself . Researcher Andrew Brandt even said, “Instead, the remote commands simply give an unknown criminal access to what some may consider sensitive data on the phone, including the browser history, bookmarks, and homepage settings in the built-in Android browser.”

As a result, Google acted immediately to contain and suspend apps infected with the malicious code. “We’re aware of and have suspended a number of suspicious applications from Android Market,” a Google spokesperson said. “We suspend apps and developer accounts that violate our policies.”

At this point in time, there are already ten apps with the malicious code identified in the market. Beware guys, you might have one of them.

Source: IT Pro

  • Howie_in_AZ

    Maybe Google should start reviewing submissions to make sure nobody’s doing anything bad. Say what you will but Apple doesn’t seem to have this issue.

  • Paul

    Where can I find a list of these ten apps ???

  • Jay

    and they are…?? You can’t post this and not explain and review what the infected apps are!!

  • Marty In Ms

    How in the world do you write an article like this and not post a list

  • MinutemanCDC_SC

    From the original IT PRO article:
    “The code appeared in a number of apps related to the hugely popular
    Angry Birds games and ran as a background service, making it somewhat
    difficult to discover.”

    So, uninstall any app related to Angry Birds, and install a cleaned up copy from Android Market.