Beware! This Keyboard App For Android Steals Money From Users


We have already come across several reports regarding threats and safety issues on the Google Play Store. The open-source platform is facing an issue in controlling malware attacks and is allowing harmful apps to find their way to Android devices.

Beware! This Keyboard App For Android Steals Money From Users


To curb the spread of malware and keep Android users safe, the platform removes malicious apps from Google Play Store on a timely basis. Recently, it removed nearly 42 such harmful apps that are said to have affected nearly 8 million Android users. While Google has already removed most of these malicious apps, one third-party app is said to pose a serious threat to Android users.

This App Can Steal Your Money

Going by a fresh report by Upstream Secure-D mobile security platform, a third-party keyboard app dubbed Ai.type can steal your money. This app has been downloaded over 40 million times, which makes it potentially harmful.

If users download this on-screen keyboard app, then they will have to pay a high price for the action, warns the report. The source cited by the report notes that the app has been making several millions of unauthorized purchases of premium digital content.

Basically, Ai.type is a free keyboard app, which delivers invisible ads. It generates face traffic and subscribes users to premium digital services. Dimitris Maniatis, head of Secure-D at Upstream states that the app contains SDKs with hardcoded links to ads. It will subscribe to users to premium services sans their consent.

These SDKs navigate to the ads via redirections and perform clicks automatically to subscribe users to premium content. It will be committed in the background so that users do not realize what is happening.

Furthermore, it is noted that the security researchers at the mobile security platform have identified and blocked over 14 million transaction requests from as many as 110,000 devices. If these transaction requests are not blocked, then these would have triggered up to $18 million worth of premium digital services. It further adds that this suspicious activity has been reportedly recorded in 13 global countries.


How To Stay Safe

Well, Google has removed the Ai.type keyboard app from the Play Store earlier this year, but it is available on other Android marketplaces. It is said that millions of Android users are still using this app. Users are recommended not to download apps from third-party platforms to avoid any security threat and stay safe.

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