While most mobile phone malware stories involve the Google Play Store, the Apple App Store is not entirely safe either. TechCrunch reports that Wandera, an enterprise security firm, discovered 14 apps that were communicating with a server related to a malware known as Golduck.
Interestingly, all 14 apps were retro-style games. Researchers point out that so far, what the saw seems relatively benign. The apps in question all have ads, and the server in question is telling the app which ad to display, including which icon and link to use.
On the flip side, the affected apps have also been caught sending IP address data and location data back to the server, among other details. It’s still a server that’s known to send malicious data to Android users, and it may be only a matter of time before it starts doing the same to iOS users.
The researchers say that while the apps themselves don’t contain malicious code, it’s the backdoor that they open up that presents the problem. This can be done via a secondary ad space that will potentially trick users into installing more malicious apps
For its part, Apple appears to have removed the affected apps from the App Store.