Exposed Implementation ZXing Team’s Barcode Scanner – one of the first Android apps, an app that predates the first official version of Android itself – for attacks within the Google Play Store.
Hundreds of users leave one-star reviews claiming that the latest update is hijacking your browser to run unwanted ads, while nearly 200 users have come to defend the app with 5-star ratings.
The app, which has nearly 100 million downloads, appears to be confused with another app with the exact same name – one that added malware in the last update. According For digital security company MalwareBytes.
And MalwareBytes appears to be aware of the confusion, as it updated its original post to be very clear that the bad barcode reader app was This application, Developed by Lavabird Corporation, not ZXing Team.
Google has removed this app from its store, so it wouldn’t be surprising if angry users searched for it and found the wrong app.
The surprising interest surprised the original app’s co-founder, Sean Owen, who made it clear that he was not concerned about the app’s reputation because he thought the allegations were ridiculous.
He said: This is an old and popular application and I think that anyone aware of it will not confuse it with any other application, as it is open source, it has not been updated in years, and there is no incentive to create an application for 13 years just to install malware in the end.
The Google Play Store shows that the app was last updated in February 2019, but Owen does not rule out the possibility that the code has been tampered with in some way.
Owen says: He and his partner (Daniel Switken) now regret their decision to make the app open source because of its cloning from companies trying to make a quick profit by adding ads.
He explained that this is not the first time that its application has been confused with another harmful application, as a research paper at one point claimed that this application sends personal information to an external site, causing a wave of bad comments, but of course the authors found that they confused two applications Similar.
ZXing Team’s Barcode Scanner app ranks 4.0 stars at the moment with nearly 640,000 reviews, and Google has yet to comment on how it handles negative comments.