Google removes 13 Android apps from Play Store infected with Brain Test malware

Google Play Store

Brain Test — The malicious software family — has managed to make a comeback affecting as many as 13 Android apps, with hundreds of thousands of downloads, from the Play Store. Google has removed all the infected apps from its Store.

“On December 29 we confirmed our suspicions that additional apps containing Brain Test malware were in Google Play. We found 13 Brain Test samples in total, written by the same developers. We contacted Google, who promptly removed these 13 apps from the Google Play Store,” states cybersecurity firm, Lookout, which reports the return of Brain Test malware in the Play Store.

The infected apps removed from the Play Store are the following:

Cake Blast, Jump Planet, Honey Comb, Crazy Block, Crazy Jelly, Tiny Puzzle, Ninja Hook, Piggy Jump, Just Fire, Eat Bubble, Hit Planet, Cake Tower and Drag Box.

Brain Test Malware

What’s the Brain Test malware?

The malicious app basically attempts to detect if a device is rooted (Rooting is the process of allowing users of smartphones, tablets and other devices running the Android mobile operating system to attain privileged control (known as root access) over various Android subsystems, it’s like Jailbreak for iOS), and then it copies several files to the/system partition.

Performing factory reset is not enough to remove the app from the compromised device, as the process does not clear the/system partition.

The solution

If your device is rooted and you think that your device has been compromised with this malware, the best solution is to first create a backup of all important data of the Android device and then re-flash stock update released by the manufacturer.

The current version of the Brain Test malware bears features similar to the original version of the malware detected in September 2015. Brain Test was first discovered by cybersecurity firm, Check Point, in September, which claims the malware was published to Google Play Store twice, with each instance having between 100,000 and 500,000 downloads. The malicious apps that had affected 200,000 to one million users, was later on removed from the Play Store.

The primary goal of this malware is to download and install additional APKs, directed by the C2 (Command and Control) server. The developer of the malware uses infected devices to download other malicious software, which in turn boosts the download numbers for each app and can post fake reviews.

Lookout states that it took the authors of the malware more than two or three months to explore means to publish the affected apps in the Play Store. A few days before Christmas 2015, the Cake Tower app received an update, which featured a similar functionality found in the initial version of Brain Test, as well as included a new command and control (C2) server.

What about having WhatsApp on your wrist?

You can already have an encyclopedia on your wrist, so why not a messaging service?

That’s at least the thinking behind the makers of WhatsApp, who have released their app for Android Wear.

Beginning today, WhatsApp has now been made available for Android Wear devices. You’ll be able to read your messages and even reply to them from your smartwatch.


Now don’t think you’ll be typing away on a tiny screen; you’ll need to talk into your wrist Dick Tracy style to dictate the messages. What’s interesting is that WhatsApp hasn’t made the update public. There isn’t any mention of it on the Google Play Store, nor have they made any official announcements regarding the latest update.

You’ll need to manually install the update to get the feature as well; it won’t be pushed to your device. It should be headed to the Google Play Store very soon, but if you want to start talking into your wrist, then you can click the source link below and go to town.

Google Play Store gets 50% more Downloads compared to Apple’s App Store!

Both the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store did great for the Q2 quarter, besting their results in Q1 by 60% and 45%, respectively.

That gave the Google Play Store, nearly 50% more downloads compared to the iOS App Store. It terms of revenue, however, it’s the Apple repository that still comes ahead.

In fact, it falls very far behind, as the App Store brings 80% more revenue to Apple, than the Play Store does for Google. The good news for Apple continue with a rise in revenue of 45% compared to the previous quarter – in US dollars.

For Google, there’s also an increase of 30%.


Untied States, Brazil and India are the top three countries that have downloaded most apps from the Play Store. India in particular, has surged jumping two places up compared to Q1, when it was fifth. Interestingly enough, the US doesn’t bring the most revenue for the Google Play Store. The top market where Android apps are sold most is Japan.

Following it are the United States, South Korea, Germany and Taiwan. Games are the most profitable category from the Play Store with Tools and Communications category close by. AppAnnie suggests that when the Android One program launches, Android will strengthen its presence in emerging markets.

Leaked screenshots reveal a possible upcoming huge Android redesign!

Google Redesigning Android App Icons [Rumor]

With every major revision of Android, Google brings about small changes to the appearance of the Android operating system. So far we’ve seen Google experiment with a bunch of different looks and according to the folks at Android Police, they claim that according to a new rumor, Google could be giving its app icons a visual makeover, possibly in a future major Android update which could be revealed at Google I/O later this June.

According to them, the new style of icons are known internally as “Moonshine” and is basically a redesign of the Google app icons to more closely resemble its web counterpart. For example the Gmail icon on the web and on Android looks different from one another, and while more proficient and experience Android users will have no problem identifying the app, first-time users could be a little lost.

Leaked screenshots reveal a possible upcoming huge Android redesignThey go on to state that the new design language Google would be opting for its icons would include a flatter appearance, together with long, hard shadows strategically placed behind prominent elements. The screenshot pictured to the right is courtesy of Android Police’s source who is apparently familiar with the matter, thus affording us a look as to what the newly designed icons could look like.

For the most part they are readily identifiable upon first glance and we have to say that we are liking what we see so far. Now the question is whether or not Google will actually make those changes. Since we’re still far away from Google I/O and a potential major Android update announcement, there is a chance that the design of the icons have yet to be finalized and that things could change at the last minute, so don’t get your heart set on this design just yet, but in the meantime what do you guys think? Are you digging the new look?

WhatsApp Update Lets You Hide “Last Seen” On Android Finally! Here’s How To Get It Right Now!

Ever since its launch, WhatsApp has always taken flak concerning privacy. Especially, the ‘Last Seen’ feature has been major headache for Android users, who couldn’t turn this notification off. Surprisingly, the provision to hide it on iOS has been there for quite some time.

Today, with the release of v2.11.169, WhatsApp has finally brought the ‘anti-stalker’ feature to Android. No more will your annoying friend know when you were last using your phone. In short, you can set it to be seen by certain contacts or simply turn it off.

Next up, is the ability to turn off Group Chat Notifications. WhatsApp now gives you better control over your group conversations, by allowing you to mute those annoying groups and not actually see any notifications. This is a welcome change since watching those hundreds notifications upon unlocking your phone isn’t a pleasant site.

Last feature allows you to pay for a friend’s WhatsApp account extension. One can choose  from 1, 3 or even a 5 year extension to the world’s largest messaging network via Google Wallet, PayPal or simply sending across a payment link. The Broadcast Notification options have been removed in this version, but the app still allows you to send broadcast messages. The update is currently not up on the Play Store yet, but one can download the latest .apk installer from the link given below.