Mobile phone platform Google Android has been hit by over 50 apps with viruses buried within them.
The malicious applications – now removed from the Android Marketplace – were duplicates of legitimate apps which had been modified to include viruses. They had been downloaded between 50,000 and 200,000 times.
BBC reports that the apps were discovered by Reddit user Lompolo, who noticed that one program was listed under the name of a publisher who had not created it.
The virus known as DroidDream works by sending personal data – such as the user's unique mobile phone ID number – to a remote server. It then bypasses security controls to give the hacker access to files and code from the phone.
Google has suspended three accounts of those who uploaded the malicious software.
The latest version of the Android operating system, Gingerbread, can now withstand the DroidDream attacks.
Image courtesy of Androidos.in