Google app ban: You need to remove it now; Google Play Store ejected it

    Google app ban: Google recently banned a number of fake apps from the Google Play Store for tricking users into downloading them. Here’s what you need to know about MineBit Pro, one of the apps that was banned.

    By: HT TECH
    | Updated on: Aug 21 2022, 20:19 IST
    Bitcoin mining apps
    Google app ban: This app was removed from Google Play Store after it was found to be tricking users into downloading it.
    Bitcoin mining apps
    Google app ban: This app was removed from Google Play Store after it was found to be tricking users into downloading it.

    Google app ban: Cryptocurrency is one of the most important buzzwords of 2021 and everyone wants to get in on the action. With notable developments like Bitcoin being made an official currency in El Salvador, there has never been a more interesting time for an investor. Naturally, malicious actors have been preparing to target users who are looking to mine their own cryptocurrency and then scamming them out of their money. Google app ban was recently slapped on as many as eight dangerous apps and these were then removed from Google Play Store. Security researchers claimed that these banned app were scamming users out of their money. Among the apps that Google banned from Play Store was the MineBit Pro - Crypto Cloud Mining & BTC Miner app.

    Last month, in a crackdown, a Google ban was imposed on eight apps including BitFunds, Bitcoin Miner, Bitcoin (BTC), Crypto Holic, Daily Bitcoin Rewards, Bitcoin 2021 and more, which were detected by security firm Trend Micro. The company alerted Google toward the fact that these apps were masquerading as “cloud mining” applications that promised its users to make money. However, these apps were tricking users into parting with their hard-earned money by promising them the ability to mine bitcoins faster with “cloud mining operations”.

    Also read: Looking for a smartphone? Check Mobile Finder here.

    The users who downloaded these apps were unfortunately targeted with ads as well, besides convincing them to pay an average monthly fee of $15 (approximately 1,100) for boosting their cloud mining operations capabilities. However, users were never able to actually withdraw their earnings, which meant that they had been scammed out of their money. In fact, the security firm was able to insert any random cryptocurrency wallet address, and the app would accept the input and pretend to work.

    While a Google ban has already been imposed on ‘MineBit Pro - Crypto Cloud Mining & BTC Miner' app and it has been removed from Google Play Store after Trend Micro flagged it, the app will still remain installed on those smartphones where it has already been downloaded. So, what users need to do is go through their smartphones and find out if it is still lurking there and to delete it immediately.

    While a Google ban has been imposed on many fake apps, the danger from them is not over. Trend Micro says that there are more than 120 fake cryptocurrency apps that are still being used by users who are unaware. What is more, these apps keep coming back on Google Play Store by subterfuge and users have to be aware of them.

    How to stay safe from dangerous apps

    In order to stay safe against an app like MineBit Pro - Crypto Cloud Mining & BTC Miner, users must verify and check reviews for each app they download on the Play Store. They must try restarting their device, if the app is fake, it might reset the counter to zero. To find out if it is a fake app, users can also try to insert any random string of letters and numbers in the cryptocurrency wallet address section – if the app accepts it, it is a clear sign something is wrong, according to the security firm. Similarly, any app claiming to waive handling and conversion fees is likely to be fake as the fees are usually quite high and this is a red flag that users should be aware of when downloading such apps. Therefore, despite a Google ban, users must make sure they are careful about what they are downloading and from which source in order to stay safe from dangerous apps.

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    First Published Date: 08 Sep, 05:30 IST
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