This malicious Android application has been downloaded more than 100 million times

Image: Audible

Google removed the CamScanner application from the Play Store on Wednesday after it was discovered that it contained malicious software.

The app downloaded more than 100 million times on the Play Store, allowed you to take pictures of sheets of paper to automatically convert them to PDF files. With more than 1.8 million reviews, she was also highly rated.

Offered for several years, it is only recently that CamScanner has been infected with malware. This one would be introduced in a recent version of the application by means of a new advertising library which was integrated there.

It was a company research team specializing in computer systems security and Kapersky anti-virus designer who discovered that CamScanner contained a Trojan horse. It could remotely activate other malware in the application code.

In concrete terms, this meant that the latter displayed intrusive advertisements and entered users into subscription services without their knowledge.

What can be learned from this story is that any application – even if it comes from an official store, even if it has a good reputation, even if it has got millions of positive comments and even if it has a large pool users – can become malware overnight , Kapersky reminded in a blog post (New Window) .

Google usually checks apps on the Play Store to make sure they are safe, but the company says moderator work is never done because of the sheer volume of apps in their store.

Cyber ​​security experts recommend on Twitter to uninstall CamScanner from your Android phone if you have downloaded it. Among other things, the OfficeLens application from Microsoft is an appropriate alternative.

The CamScanner development team has ensured on its website that a new version of the application will be available soon and will not contain malware.

The iOS version of CamScanner has not been affected by this malware and remains downloadable on the Apple App Store.

Agatha Greer
Agatha is our business/finance specialist. She left her corporate job in Finance after 12 years so she could pursue her dream - that of being a journalist. Besides her job, Agatha is a dedicated mother of two who likes to travel and to spend time with her family.