Published: Mon, November 06, 2017
Industry | By Dora Warner

Audiobooks, in-app notifications, and more coming to Google Play Store

Audiobooks, in-app notifications, and more coming to Google Play Store

When IANS checked it on the Play Store, we found the app has been downloaded up to 5,000 times.

Millions of Android phone and tablet users have been caught out by a fake WhatsApp listing on the official Google Play store.

The fake app, now removed from the official Play Store, appeared to be developed by WhatsApp Inc, the legit Facebook-owned maker of the messaging client. The only difference between the name of the developer of a real and fake app is some Unicode character.

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"All of them have four-star review averages, presumably thanks to industrial-scale subversion of Play's review system", said Fortune. It has barely been 24 hours of the app being spotted, and it has over a million downloads already. Luckily for those who did install the app, the only thing it did was push ads for other apps. This fake WhatsApp app called itself "Update WhatsApp Messenger" and even had the developer name listed as 'WhatsApp Inc*' (notice the extra asterisk after Inc).

To be fair, it is very easy to fall for the dupe app.

While Google continues to keep taking steps like Play Protect to improve in this department, the Play Store is brimmed with fake apps. "Business Inc.", had a high rating of 4.3, despite some users describing it as a "fraud app" and "data theft".

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The existence of the shady software was first highlighted by the popular WhatsApp change tracking website WABetaInfo, via Twitter user @MujtabaMHaq, IB Times reported late on Thursday.

Reportedly, there is also a fake version of popular mobile game Temple Run 2 making round on Google Play Store, which was uploaded on the platform in October. However, various versions of the Update WhatsApp Messenger app are still available for download. Google Play rules don't allow apps to impersonate another brand title or logo.

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