Over 11 million people have installed spyware from 'Big Star Labs'

alimac

VIP Member
VIP Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2013
Messages
6,538
Likes
925
#1
Apps are quietly collecting full browser histories against Google rules


In brief: A new batch of spyware has been discovered by AdGuard Research. The malware comes in the form of Android app (and one unsanctioned iOS app) and extensions for Chrome and Firefox. The apps are owned by a company called "Big Star Labs," but nothing is known about it.

Security researchers at AdGuard discovered multiple browser extensions and apps that were secretly collecting the browsing history of over 11 million people. All of the apps belonged to Big Star Labs based out of Delaware. However, nobody can figure out who is behind the company or who they share the data with.

“The apps and extensions we discovered doing this belong to a newly registered Delaware company named 'Big Star Labs,' so it is difficult to track them down to the real beneficiaries,“This also makes it almost impossible to track whom they share your data with.”

Big Star Labs appears to be using primarily nine products for its spying (number of installs in brackets).

  • Block Site for Android, Chrome, and Firefox [1.7 million+]
  • AdblockPrime for iOS [unknown]
  • Mobile Health Club for Android [unknown]
  • Poper Blocker for Chrome and Firefox [2.3 million+]
  • CrxMouse for Chrome [410,000+]
  • Speed BOOSTER for Android [5 million+]
  • Battery Saver for Android [1 million+]
  • AppLock | Privacy Protector for Android [500,000+]
  • Clean Droid for Android [500,000+]

The privacy policies of all the apps claim that they only collected “non-personal” or “anonymized” data. However, as the apps are collecting your browsing data, your true identity can be exposed or ascertained. For example, unless you use a pseudonym, every time you visit your Facebook or Twitter profile your real name is revealed to anyone looking at your browsing history.

As of this morning, all of the apps and extensions have been removed from Google Play and the Chrome WebStore. If you already have one or more of the apps, you might want to uninstall them. As always, be careful when picking your software. Read the privacy policy and terms of service agreements, and never install anything unless you trust the developer.

Over 11 million people have installed spyware from 'Big Star Labs'
 
TEST
Top