While many people believe that an antivirus app is nowadays as essential on mobile devices as on desktops in the past, a new report has claimed that a large number of antivirus and anti-malware apps on Android are just ineffective or unreliable.
Cipot recommended users install anti-malware software since it provides "the opportunity of viewing the rating of the apps and checking if the installed app has any weird behavior listed or uses functionality that should not be there".
Considering the fact that the Google Play Store is the place where everyone goes to whenever they want to download a new app or game, the Android parent is always looking for new ways to improve the service's performances and stability.
Only 23 of these apps detected 100% of the malware strains tested. For instance, they can force a browser on the device to open a URL showing more adverts. A few more were over 99 percent effective.
Traditional adware typically hijacks ads or displays additional ads to users, but SimBad is that and more, reflecting a far more serious malware threat. They may allow all apps whose package files start with "com.instagram", but it would be trivial to create rogue apps that used a variant on that name. Finally, Google Play will need 64-bit support in all apps later this year.
So how should you pick an antivirus app? That is a disadvantage because malware creators can easily bypass those lists.
The so-called Simbad malware was built into mobile gaming titles such as Real Tractor Farming Simulator, Heavy Mountain Bus Simulator 2018, and Snow Heavy Excavator Simulator, according to infosec research biz Check Point today. This could turn out to be a risky approach as hackers would use similar package names of their malicious apps to bypass the security.
AV-Comparatives found that most of the apps are just using app whitelists or blacklists and aren't scanning codes.
Running a shady app that promises to keep you safe while doing nothing can also give you a false sense of security.
Think of the last time you downloaded an app from the Play Store and it didn't work because you didn't have the right version on your phone.