#1 Paid App in Google Play Store, Virus Shield, is a Complete Scam

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The new #1 paid application in the Google Play store starting at $4 turns out to be a complete scam. The application with over 10,000 downloads, and an average 4.7 star rating was found to be fake.

Security is essential, especially on smartphones with new sophisticated malware campaigns be launched regularly. A new application that reached the #1 application in the Google Play Store recently was found to be a mobile virus scanner. The application named, Virus Shield, was a new sleek application that claimed with the press of a button, your mobile android phone would be shielded from viruses, and malicious applications.

Virus Shield starting at $3.99 reached the top of the play store immediately in just under a week. The Virus Shield application reached the top of the charts relativity fast, gaining thousands of downloads every day, initially reaching #3 in the top overall payed apps.

The app description claimed it “Prevents harmful apps from being installed on your device,” “scans apps, settings, files, and media in real time,” while it protects “your personal information”. Too add it claimed to have little to no impact on the battery life, and have zero ads.

With its impressive 4.7 star rating, it had just one issue, it was a complete scam. It is a completely fake security application, with no use at all. It didn’t infect users, install malware, or harm the device, it literally did absolutely nothing. It did one thing when the application was open, with one click to a red X,  the graphic turned into a red shield, claiming your devices was “shielded” or protected. The application did nothing at all.

The researchers at Android Police decompiled the application, and posted it to GitHub for the public to review. To review their work, you can find and review the files here. Many Google plus users have confirmed it is indeed fake.

Researchers think the initial reviews were indeed fake, but the application eventually started picking up real traffic, and making the developer a considerable amount of money. The developer, “Deviant Solutions”, doesn’t seem to have anything tied to the account other than a random email address accused of scamming users on past online forums.

Google has since removed the fraudulent application from their play store as of April 6.

The application did not appear to be malicious or have any intent than to other scam people of their money upfront.

About Author

Brandon Stosh is the founder and CEO of www.freedomhacker.net. Stosh is a cyber security researcher and professional consultant who strives to provide reliable news on cyber-security based topics.

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