Malware-infected Android apps have grown by over 400%

According to a report from RiskIQ, the number of malware apps residing in the Google Play store has actually gone up quite significantly over a two-year span. The data found that more than 42,000 apps contained some form of malware last year, up from just 11,000 a few years before. Google’s ecosystem has had a long and stories history of containing malicious software, and it appears the search giant’s effort to stomp out the fires have not been successful.

The number of mobile apps infected with malware in Google’s Play store nearly quadrupled between 2011 and 2013, a security group has reported. In 2011, there were approximately 11,000 apps in Google’s mobile marketplace that contained malicious software capable of stealing people’s data and committing fraud, according to the results of a study published Wednesday by RiskIQ, an online security services company. By 2013, more than 42,000 apps in Google’s store contained spyware and information-stealing Trojan programs, researchers said. Apps designed to personalize people’s Android-based phones were most susceptible, as well as entertainment and gaming apps. Some of the most malicious apps in the Google Play store downloaded since 2011 were Wallpaper Dragon Ball, a wallpaper app, and the games Finger Hockey and Subway Surfers Free Tips.

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