It’s kind of interesting to sit here and watch as the whole Android space begins to suffer from malware infections something that the Windows world had to deal with for much of its history, and gave the Microsoft platform a lot of bad press in the process.
There isn’t a week that doesn’t go by that we don’t hear about some sort of malware making the Android rounds and this week is no different as we find out that Google had to go on a cleaning spree of the Android Marketplace due to a major infestation of malware targeting SMS apps.
According to a post at ReadWriteWeb the reports are from Lookout Mobile Security who says that the apps are generally pirated clones or add-ons of popular games as well as other apps that send premium SMS messages without a user’s consent.
Google was informed by Lookout of nine of these apps, referred to as RuFraud apps, which Google removed from the marketplace but overnight the maker of the apps posted another 13 of them; which apparently have now been pulled as well.
Estimates on downloads of these apps range from 10,000 (Sophos) to 14,000 (Lookout). Sophos notes that these types of apps easily get through to the Android Market because the cost of becoming a developer in the Android Market is less than what a malicious hacker could make by putting these apps in the wild, even if they were only available for a short amount of time.
Unlike with Windows though it seems that Google is getting off easy when it comes to public reaction to this type of malware infesting the marketplace, and it is only going to get worse.