Technology / Millions of Minecraft fans under threat from fake Android apps

Millions of Minecraft fans under threat from fake Android apps

Up to three million Minecraft fans could be at risk after tens of fake cheats apps were found to be available for download on the Google Play store.


The “scareware” software, discovered by ESET, displayed banners telling users their devices were infected with a “dangerous virus” and fooled users into taking out a subscription to a premium text service, which would cost them €4.80 per week.

All of the 33 apps were uploaded over the last nine months, the firm said on its blog. Since then, they have been downloaded between 660,000 and 2.8 million times.

Not only were their interfaces covered in virus-related banner ads, but the seemingly legitimate Start, Options and Exit buttons had no coded-in functionality, ESET said. Clicking on any of these banners or buttons would prompt a fake virus alert.

The language of the advertisements was based on the device’s geographic location.

If a user followed the instructions they were sent to a fake anti-virus site that tricked them into signing up for the text service with a message posing as an activation text.

Since security researchers discovered the rogue apps Google has removed them from the store.

For more information, see the ESET website.

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