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In what is become a recurrent ritual, Google removed a malicious Android application from the Google Play Store. This time the culprit is FlixOnline, a malicious app that has shackled people into pretending to give them free access to Netflix. His banishment from the Play Store it’s great, But it is your responsibility to remove it from your device if you have been aspired to download it anytime.

While most Lifehacker readers were probably smart enough to avoid app prosupgrade – two months of free Netflix for absolutely nothing! – I can see that this pitch works totally on many people who, struck by a case of pandemic negligence, were simply looking for something else to do during quarantine. Wellpoiler: There is no easy way to get Netflix for free (not even from Netflix itself).

If you have installed the FlixOnline app in the hope of being able to stream The queen’s gambit free of charge, You were wrong. Instead, by granting “Overlay”, “Ignore Battery Optimization” and “Notification” app permissions, you gave it everything it needed to broadcast fake login overlays on legitimate apps, run forever and access (or reply to) all your devices. notifications. And if WhatsApp is installed, the situation gets worse, because Checkpoint search describes:

“Check Point Research (CPR) recently discovered malware on Google Play hidden in a bogus app capable of spreading through users’ WhatsApp messages. If the user downloaded the bogus app and unintentionally granted the malware the proper permissions, the malware is able to automatically respond to the victim’s incoming WhatsApp messages with a payload received from a command and control server ( CC). This unique method could have allowed threat writers to spread phishing attacks, spread false information or steal credentials and data from users’ WhatsApp accounts, and more. “

You probably remember if you installed the FlixOnline app or not – you probably would have done in the last few months. If you have, and you‘ve ruIn this case, it might not appear in your app drawer due to its ability to hide its own icon. Instead, vis your device’s equivalent of Settings> Apps & Notifications> App Info to delete it (your Android specific path may differ).

You will also want to change the passwords for all apps and services you use on your device, just in case. This is especially true if you had to connect in (or reconnect in) to one of your applications or services over time since you installed FlixOnline. Finally, use this as a good time to learn and focus on to improve your safety habits go forward. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is; if you are not sure, a quick searching the web is usually all you need to do to determine if an app is legitimate or incredibly suspicious.

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