While the talk continues on the privacy implications of participating in the viral FaceApp Challenge, security researchers have currently issued warnings concerning fake FaceApp challenge apps spotted in the wild and installing malware.
As we all know, this FaceApp is nothing new, it first went viral back in 2017, but this latest FaceApp Challenge has taken the internet by storm. Thomas Brewster from Forbes wrote “One tweet set off a minor internet panic this week when a developer warned that the app could be taking all the photos from your phone and uploading them to its servers with none obvious permission from the user.”
The privacy debate will likely run further. However, there is no doubting the privacy, security and information risk being posed by a fake FaceApp that has been spotted in the wild by researchers at Kaspersky. The challenge for those unfortunate enough to install this app, which tricks users into thinking it is a certified version of FaceApp, is not getting infected by malware. That could prove much harder than dealing with what users might look like in a few years.
“Kaspersky has identified a fake application that is designed to trick users into thinking it is an authorized version of FaceApp,” Igor Golovin, a security researcher at Kaspersky, warned, “but goes on to infect devices with an adware module known as MobiDash.”
The first identification and detection of the fake FaceApp were a week ago, but according to Kaspersky information, around 500 unique users have been infected by the malware within the last 48 hours. “Once the application is downloaded from unofficial sources and put in, it simulates a failure and is subsequently removed. After that, a malicious module in the application rests discreetly on the user’s device, displaying adverts.” wrote Golovin.