Malware in Google Play: Latest tactics used to penetrate the official app store

Tech 2 (718B) October 9, 2019 2:45 pm - 3:45 pm Feedback     

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Corneliu Nitu

This presentation focuses on the malicious actors’ efforts to introduce and spread malicious apps through the Google Play app store, and how various players (consumers, internet providers, security firms, etc.) can help to thwart these efforts. One of the most common ways of conducting cyber security attacks (beside phishing) is through trojenized applications that end users download on their mobile phones from app stores. The most common security recommendation is to avoid downloading from third-party app stores and to use the official Google app store. Despite all efforts to scan the applications for threats, malicious applications still find their way into the official app store. Monitoring of mobile ISPs around the world for malicious activity reveals the existence of significant malicious traffic generated by applications downloaded from the official app store. I will highlight the latest techniques used by malicious actors to enhance their ability to upload apps which circumvent the blocker system of the official app store. I will also discuss the actions that various players (application developers, consumers, internet providers, security firms) can take to reduce the penetration of the app store.