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Android users: delete these apps – they’re riddled with malware

More than 50 Android apps have been removed from the Play Store. Check your devices to make sure you don’t have them installed

google play store logo with blurred background on android
Image: KnowTechie

UPDATE 8/19/2022 10:30 AM ET: new report from Bitdefender says there are another 35 malicious apps on the Google Play Store.

Over 50 Android apps have been found hiding malware, once again. Google has removed the apps from the Play Store, but you should check your devices to ensure you don’t have any of them installed.

In fact, BleepingComputer reports that this group of malicious Android apps was downloaded over 300,000 times. As a result, that led to “stolen data, social media account takeovers, SMS interception, and unauthorized charges to their mobile numbers.” Ouch.

In that case, if you have any apps installed from the list below, delete them immediately. After that, it’s probably worth doing a device clean-up to remove any stray files.

Delete these Android apps, they contain malware

50 Android apps have been found to contain the Joker malware. Thankfully, all of them have been removed from the Google Play Store, but you should check your device to ensure you don’t have any installed.


For the most part, the Joker malware is an information stealer, taking SMS content and contact lists. Then, it subscribes the victim to premium wireless application protocol (WAP) services.

As shown below, here is the full list of Android apps found to be hiding the Joker malware (via Zscaler):

  • Simple Note Scanner – com.wuwan.pdfscan
  • Private Messenger – com.recollect.linkus
  • Smart Messages – com.toukyoursms.timemessages
  • Blood Pressure Checker – com.bloodpressurechecker.tangjiang
  • Memory Silent Camera – com.silentmenory.timcamera
  • Light Messages – com.lilysmspro.lighting
  • Send SMS – exazth.message.send.text.sms
  • Instant Messenger – com.sbdlsms.crazymessager.mmsrec
  • Fonts Emoji Keyboard – com.zemoji.fontskeyboard
  • Mini PDF Scanner – com.mnscan.minipdf
  • Creative Emoji Keyboard – com.whiteemojis.creativekeyboard.ledsloard
  • Fonts Emoji Keyboard – com.symbol.fonts.emojikeyboards
  • Funny Emoji Message – com.funie.messagremo
  • Professional Messages – com.adore.attached.message
  • Chat SMS – com.maskteslary.messages
  • Wow Translator – com.imgtop.camtranslator
  • Cool Messages – com.learningz.app.cool.messages
  • Chat Text SMS – com.echatsms.messageos
  • Emoji Theme Keyboard – com.gobacktheme.lovelyemojikeyboard
  • Text SMS – com.ptx.textsms
  • Come Messages – com.itextsms.messagecoming
  • Rich Theme Message – com.getmanytimes.richsmsthememessenge
  • Advanced SMS – com.fromamsms.atadvancedmmsopp
  • Classic Game Messenger – com.classcolor.formessenger.sic
  • Private Game Messages – com.message.game.india
  • Social Message – com.colorsocial.message
  • Universal PDF Scanner – com.unpdf.scan.read.docscanuniver
  • Premium SMS – com.premium.put.trustsms
  • Text Emoji SMS – messenger.itext.emoji.mesenger
  • Funny Keyboard – com.soundly.galaxykeyboard
  • Custom Themed Keyboard – com.custom.keyboardthemes.galaxiy
  • Themes Photo Keyboard – com.themes.bgphotokeyboard
  • Themes Chat Messenger – com.relish.messengers
  • Cool Keyboard – com.colate.gthemekeyboard
  • Smart SMS Messages – com.sms.mms.message.ffei.free
  • Fancy SMS – con.sms.fancy
  • Personal Message – com.crown.personalmessage
  • Magic Photo Editor – com.amagiczy.photo.editor
  • All Photo Translator – myphotocom.allfasttranslate.transationtranslator
  • Smile Emoji – com.balapp.smilewall.emoji
  • All Language Translate – com.exclusivez.alltranslate
  • Blood Pressure Diary – bloodhold.nypressure.mainheart.ratemy.mo.depulse.app.tracker.diary
  • Hi Text SMS – ismos.mmsyes.message.texthitext.bobpsms
  • iMessager – start.me.messager
  • Camera Translator – com.haixgoback.outsidetext.languagecameratransla
  • Painting Photo Editor – com.painting.pointeditor.photo
  • Quick Talk Message – mesages.qtsms.messenger
  • Professional Messenger – com.akl.smspro.messenger
  • Style Message – com.istyle.messagesty
  • Timestamp Camera – allready.taken.photobeauty.camera.timestamp

Another app, Vanilla Snap Camera (cam.vanilla.snapp) was stealing Facebook logins. This was installed roughly 5,000 times, so ensure it’s not on your devices.

And one last app, Unicc QR Scanner (com.qrdscannerratedx), hid Coper malware. In this case, Coper targets banking apps in Europe, Australia, and South America. Once installed, it can manage SMS, log keystrokes, and almost anything the hacker can think of.

Stay safe on your devices

With this in mind, you can take a few simple steps to protect yourself from malware on your Android device.

First, avoid installing unknown messaging apps. In particular, those sent to you by friends who could already be infected. That’s because messaging apps request access to SMS and can take your two-factor authentication one-time-passwords.

Additionally, read app reviews before installing, and stick to large, well-known publishers. Furthermore, pay attention to what permissions the app is asking for. If anything seems weird, it probably is, so delete it immediately.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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