Researchers at Kaspersky Lab have uncovered multiple malicious cryptocurrency-mining applications being distributed via the Google Play store, with the miners posing as games, sports streaming apps, and VPNs. Some of these have been downloaded more than 100,000 times.
While the applications appear to provide legitimate functions, their real purpose is to secretly use the CPU power of the device to mine the cryptocurrency Monero. Illicit cryptocurrency-mining has grown in popularity this year and, while mobile devices have far less power than a PC for illicit mining, there are billions of smartphones around the world and they’re an easy target for attackers. That’s especially the case given how easily users can install apps.
Read more about the findings of the recent Kaspersky Lab research on Android security on ZDNet.