From Samsung to Huawei, Android smartphones are some of the most popular handheld devices around the world.
But if you use an Android smartphone, a new report may encourage you to reassess which apps you have installed.
Researchers from Avast have discovered three dangerous apps on the Google Play Store that contain adware, which can bombard your smartphone with irritating apps.
The team has also identified four dangerous iOS apps that also contain adware.
Worryingly, the apps are being promoted on TikTok – a social media app predominantly used by young teens.
The apps pose as entertainment apps, including music downloaders, wallpaper apps and games (scroll down for the full list).
While they seem innocent on the surface, the apps contain contain a type of adware called HiddenAds, which can aggressively bombard you with ads.
Avast was alerted to the apps after a child reported a TikTok profile promoting them.
Jakub Vavra, threat analyst at Avast, said: “We thank the young girl who reported the TikTok profile to us, her awareness and responsible action is the kind of commitment we should all show to make the cyberworld a safer place.
“The apps we discovered are scams and violate both Google’s and Apple’s app policies by either making misleading claims around app functionalities, or serving ads outside of the app and hiding the original app icon soon after the app is installed.
“It is particularly concerning that the apps are being promoted on social media platforms popular among younger kids, who may not recognise some of the red flags surrounding the apps and therefore may fall for them.”
As well as on TikTok, the apps are also being promoted on Instagram, according to Avast.
The researchers have reported the apps to Apple and Google, and has reported the profiles promoting them to TikTok and Instagram.
Based on the findings, the experts are urging parents to be wary about the apps their children download.
Mr Vavra added: “It’s also important for parents to speak to their children about apps and what to look out for before downloading an app, or make it a rule for children to ask for permission before allowing them to download an app, to avoid potential unnecessary costs.”
The dangerous apps
ThemeZone – Shawky App Free – Shock My Friends
Tap Roulete ++Shock my Friend
Ultimate Music Downloader – Free Download Music
Shock My Friends – Satuna
ThemeZone – Live Wallpapers
shock my friend tap roulette v