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Here are the new 2018 additions to Google's Android Excellence app list

13 January 2018

All of those affected apps were available for download on Google's Play Store up until recently.

The new addition works exactly like a usual Duo call which includes the Knock-Knock feature through which you can see the preview of the caller before you pick it up.

One pop-up presented to victims displayed an image of Kim Kardashian posing in bed, promising viewers "new leaked pictures" if they clicked a "subscribe" button.

Dupe the user into allowing the app to send premium SMS messages at the victim's expense.

Upon installation, AdultSwine waits to initiate its attack until a boot occurs or when the user unlocks their phone. From there, it proceeds with one of three attack scenarios. Users can also block the caller from contacting them again.

The most shocking element of this malware is that it is capable of causing pornographic ads from the attacker's ad library to pop up on the screen without warning, above legitimate game apps.

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Some of the apps also display fake notices showing the phone has been infected by a virus and provides a malicious link to a fake virus cleaner.

Dubbed "AdultSwine" the malware hides inside game apps that Google Play data says have been downloaded between 3 to 7 million times, Check Point said in blog posting on Friday.

It also has a much wider range of malicious activities that it could pursue because the malware simply receives a target link from its command and control server and displays it to the user. Duo users can now make calls to other users who do not have the app installed on their smartphones.

The scareware "virus removal" tool has also been removed from Google Play for using inappropriate marketing tactics to drive installs.

Check Point said it expected AdultSwine and similar malware to be repeated and imitated by hackers, warning users to be extra vigilant when installing apps, especially those intended for use by children.

Here are the new 2018 additions to Google's Android Excellence app list