Survey finds counterfeit apps in Google Play store

Google Play logoCounterfeit versions of mobile applications account for more than 1 per cent of titles in the Google Play store, antivirus provider Bitdefender estimates.

Bitdefender made the estimate after looking at the code underpinning 420,646 apps on Google Play. The survey found 1.2 per cent of the sampled apps shared more than 90 per cent of their code with another product, indicating the developer had simply copied an existing program.

"It's about a publisher who takes an application, reverse-engineers its code, adds aggressive advertising SDKs (software development kits) or other beacons, then repackages and distributes it as his own," said Catalin Cosoi, chief security strategist at Bitdefender.

The addition of advertising modules to the app creates a revenue stream for the counterfeiter. Freed from the time and money needed to develop an app, this is almost all profit to the counterfeiter. The main cost is the $25 Google charges to sign up for a developer account.

Active counterfeiters will have to pay this signup fee multiple times, as once the dodgy app is reported Google terminates their account.

     Want our news sent directly to your inbox?

Yes please 2


Home  |  About us  |  Contact us  |  Advertise  |  Links  |  Partners  |  Privacy Policy  |   |  RSS feed   |  back to top