Symantec reveals that nearly 1 million or around one-third of all Android apps are actually malware.

The firm that exposed around 700,000 virus-laden apps in 2013, is now claiming that “17 percent of all Android apps (nearly one million total)” are actually malware in disguise.

According to its latest Internet Security Threat Report, more than one third of all Android apps were found to be what Symantec dubs as “grayware” or “madware.” Grayware or Madware means mobile software the primary purpose of which is to bombard your device with ads.

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Symantec also disclosed the first example of mobile-crypto ransomware for Android devices. It is a kind of software that hijacks your data, encrypts it and holds it hostage until the victim pays required ransom amount.

However, the good news is that you can easily prevent your Android device from these apps, but only if you download apps from a trusted source. Google Play Store is one of the numerous Trusted Sources.

Symantec didn’t identify the total number of these malware apps listed on Google Play Store. However, the firm’s Security Response Director Kevin Haley confirmed that the number was quite low.

According to Haley: 

“Google does a good job of keeping malware out of the Store. And if a malicious app does make it in there, they do a good job of finding it and getting rid of it.”

If you do not prefer Google Play Store then visit substitute Android marketplaces and always download an app from the developer’s website.

Symantec reveals that majority of the malware-laden androids apps steal personal data such as contact lists, phone numbers, etc. The data is later sold at the Internet Black Markets.

Some malware apps may send text messages and add unnecessary charges to your monthly mobile service bill. Other apps can bombard your device with randomly popping up ads. Some may even change your phone’s default ringtone.

Read complete report below:

Thus, if you observe unusual changes on your monthly bill or ads start to bombard your mobile phone at unexpected application then this shows you have downloaded an infected app. In such a situation, says Haley, you must run a mobile security app scan to avoid further complications.


Waqas

Waqas Amir is a Milan-based cybersecurity journalist with a passion for covering latest happenings in cyber security and tech world. In addition to being the founder of this website, Waqas is also into gaming, reading and investigative journalism.