Fake finance apps
News | 09/25/2018

Google Play vulnerable to Fake finance apps target users around the world

About: The ethical code of conduct was broken by Google when 6 malicious apps were found on Play-store. These apps were mimicking famous banking apps to lure users. Let us read more to go through the details of this deceit

| News | Google Play vulnerable to Fake finance apps target users around the world

Fake finance apps on Google Play


Google Play Store is a premier global marketplace to distribute innovative apps and games. Its stringent developer policies make this online platform world’s most trusted source for apps and games. Fake finance apps Google Play Store’s Developer Policies include:

  • Prohibiting apps with Sexually Explicit or Inappropriate Content that promote hatred, violence, terrorism, bullying and harassment.
  • Discouraging apps that expose users to deceptive or harmful financial instruments.
  • Forbid apps that promote illegal activities like illicit sale of drugs, liquor, or tobacco etc
  • Taboo copied or impersonated apps that aim to deceive users.
  • Interdict apps that infringe on the intellectual property rights of others.

The list of these policies is non-exhaustive. Google Play Store has earned a huge fan following because of these policies. Billions of Android and Windows users rely on Google Play Store to download any app or games. However we should also understand that with evolving technologies completely avoiding forged apps or apps with embedded malware script is a herculean task.

Google Play Store, a home to millions of Apps is facing an uphill battle to keep fake apps away from the app store. Cunning app owners adopt deceptive tactics to set their foot into the Play store and worse, stay there.

Recent research reveals that this digital distribution service was targeted by fake finance apps developers to swindle people of their hard earned money. The treats actors this time impersonated six renowned financial apps from Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Switzerland, Poland & the Austrian crypto-currency exchange Bitpanda. These masqueraded Fake finance apps are as follows:

  1. NetBank Mobile:NetBank Mobile This is an online banking Mobile app prevalent in Australia. The authenticated version of this net banking app that allows users to quickly, securely transact and manage banking accounts was masqueraded to deceive users and deprive them of their fortune.
  2. BitPanda Viewer: It is an online app store for securely storing and transacting in crypto-currencies like Bitcoins, ethereum, litecoin, ripple and more. This Austrian digital currency app was mimicked.
  3. Post Finance:Post Finance It is an online banking app used in Switzerland that provides innovative and comprehensive financial services in the fields of payments, investments, retirement planning and financing. The popularity of the app among the masses made it a lucrative target among cyber maniacs.
  4. TSB Online Money: TSB Online MoneyThe incredible security features like Fingerprint recognition, Face ID and Samsung Pass of this wonderful app for UK people made it a soft target.
  5. GoMoney: NetBank MobileThis is an infamous banking App in New Zealand that uses intelligent features like Voice ID to make secure transactions. The acceptance of this app acted like nail in its own coffin.
  6. WBK Zachodni Mobile:WBK Zachodni Mobile This application for Polish clients offers convenient access to online bank services. The first place ranking of this mobile banking app caught attention of the bonkers to delude users.

Threat Behavior of Fake finance apps

Once these fake apps are installed on the device, they seek for credit or debit card credentials. These include:Fake finance apps

  1. Card Number
  2. Car Expiry
  3. CVV/ CVC Code
  4. Secure Code
  5. Login credentials

These details are sent to servers of the corrupt authors who misuse this information to extort users or render them bankrupt.

The apps were distributed with different developer’s name. However, the similarly in the code of all the apps revealed that they were designed by the same developer.

Facts and Figures: These apps have been downloaded by thousands of users since their launch in June 2018.

Steps to Stay Safe of Fake finance apps

  1. Users should be cautious about the point of origination while installing apps.
  2. Installing authenticated antivirus programs on your device goes a long way to detect and block malicious apps.
  3. Users should pay heed to app ratings and reviews while downloading any app.
  4. Under no circumstances, users should enter sensitive information into online forms unless they are assured of their security and legitimacy.

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