How to avoid malicious apps on your Appstore

All kinds of malware including viruses, trojans, and other security threats such as data breaches were last year’s anthem. Unfortunately, researchers also predicted that the trend would continue into 2018. In the smartphone realm, Android users were the most affected by malware propagated by malvertising and even by fake apps. Last year, a malware named Judy infected approximately 36.5 million Android devices. This malware generated auto clicking adware which is a big bother especially for a phone user. Other threats such as fake apps are more advanced in that they can lock you out of your device soon after installation.

Fortunately, Google launched a campaign which has been successful and continues to remove fake and rogue apps from its Play store. It also introduced a system-wide feature known as Google Play protect which regularly scans your apps and device for harmful behavior, much like an antivirus. At times it may remove a harmful app depending on how malicious it is. Even with this mechanism in place, users still are getting malware on their droid, and the problem is the Users. An individual may install malware without knowing. Below are a few steps that will ensure you won’t download malware anymore.

Third-party app stores are a no zone. Third party App Stores are known for providing apps that are not available in the Play store, apps that have premium subscriptions and other goodies that are not offered in the Play store. With all these enticing features, users tend to forget that it’s in these stores where you can download malware without even knowing.

Always double check if you are installing the right app. Most malware gets into people’s devices by downloading a fake copycat app. Hackers found that disguising in plain sight is a good idea and it worked. Before installing an app, check the name of the developer and if possible visit their official site for other relevant information. Fake apps usually lack websites and other important info such as support and contact details.

Read the corresponding app reviews. Official popular apps will have many reviews from reputable sources such as publications, a lot of ratings and also replies from the developers. If an app is malicious, it’s likely you will find low ratings and many negative reviews. Also, on the Appstore, check when the app was last updated.

Be on the know – Follow security news. Every day, there are reports online about a threat, vulnerabilities and even new malware. Following security publications will make sure you are updated on what is happening, and you will know what to do when a disaster occurs. You will also avoid specific apps which might have been reported to be malicious.

Keep your device up to date. Attackers usually exploit known vulnerabilities. To avoid being a victim, always update your apps regularly or as soon as an update becomes available. Also, download security updates and patches for your device. These patches fix security loopholes and other vulnerabilities that might be present on your device.

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