Plankton malware infected Angry Birds cheat apps

After last weeks DroidKungFu removal, Google removed from the Android Market spyware program Plankton.

The Plankton spyware was discovered by the same University professor who first discovered the DroidKungFu malware. Professor XuXian Jiang from the North Carolina State University reported the malware to Google who suspended the applications the same day.

plankton malware spyware

The Plankton malware share similarities with the DroidKungFu malware as both collect various information about the infected device. The information data range from the phone IMEI number, to bookmarks and browsing history. The malware then connects to a remote server to download even more files, increasing the amount of data used by the user.

The scary part in all this, is that the Plankton has remained undetected by most virus apps and has been in the Android Market for the last 3 months. The Plankton malware has been found on the cheat apps for the popular games Angry Birds by Rovio Studio. Note that the game Angry Birds itself is has not be affected.

The Android openness is once again at the center of another debate, how closely should Android apps be monitored if at all?
It seems like every week, the Android Market is afflicted by malware. On top of that, the Android Market is supposed to be the safest of all apps market. Should Google monitor apps before they get published like Apple does?

At the moment, any publisher can submit an app and have it available for distribution within a day in the Android Market. As opposed to Apple’s AppStore which reviews extensively all submitted apps. In a way, I believe that Google should review Android apps, so that at least Android apps have some quality in them also. It’s just a matter of creating a better and safer Android environment. Don’t you think?


Security Alert: New Stealthy Android Spyware — Plankton — Found in Official Android Market