Wednesday , December 1 2021
PUA: 16.8 Million Nigerians Cyberattacked Through Ad-Supported Apps

PUA: 16.8 Million Nigerians Cyberattacked Through Ad-Supported Apps

A multinational cybersecurity business named Kaspersky conducted a study on the threat environment in a few African nations, recording over 28 million malware assaults and 102 million potentially undesirable apps (PUA) in the smartphones of numerous people in Kenya, South Africa, and Nigeria.

According to a statement made by Kaspersky, the proliferation of PUAs and hacks occurred over a seven-month period.

According to the cybersecurity and antivirus company, a PUA is any software that a user did not choose to install on their device. The ad-supported software is one example of such a program (or adware).


These are pieces of software that show unsolicited adverts on computers. When they infect mobile devices, they are referred to as malware. Pornware is a type of PUA that shows pornographic content on devices.

Some PUAs are lawfully designed applications, however, they may be exploited to pose unique risks to users, such as the distribution of harmful software such as spyware, viruses, or other malware. Cybercriminals may purposefully conceal malware into PUAs, advertising websites, or supporting software.

According to the cybersecurity firm, not only are PUAs growing more widespread, but they are also more effective than traditional malicious software. Researchers have found that attacks on PUAs users occur four times more frequently than attacks on traditional malicious software.

For example, if over 16.8 million PUAs were detected in Nigeria over a seven-month period, 3.8 million malware assaults were also revealed to have occurred more than four times in the nation over that same period of time.

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“The reason ‘grey zone’ software is becoming more popular is that it is more difficult to detect at first and that if the program is identified, its designers will not be deemed hackers “explained Kaspersky security expert Denis Parinov. “The issue with them is that consumers are not always aware that they agreed to the installation of such apps on their device, and in some situations, such apps are abused or used as a cover for malware downloads.”

In South Africa, around 10 million malicious software assaults were detected, and 43 million Puas were discovered throughout the review period. According to Kaspersky, internet users in Kenya face greater threats, with over 14 million malicious software discovered, and 43 million PUAs identified.

These kinds of cyberattacks were also popular in Kenya but were largely carried out by unlicensed and dishonest financial institutions.

Because of this, many people who wanted to get involved in trading started to search Capex Broker review, in order to find out whether or not a certain broker was among the scam financial companies and were licensed or not, as everyone who advertised something online was thought to be a fake.

However, it is also perilous for Nigeria since the potential harm these assaults might inflict on the local digital realm is tremendous.

Potentially unwanted apps (PUAs) are apps that are not dangerous in and of themselves. However, they typically have a detrimental impact on user experience. Adware, for example, floods user devices with advertisements; aggressive monetization software spreads unwanted paid offers; and downloaders may install other apps on the device, including harmful ones.

The researchers discovered that PUAs infect users nearly four times more frequently than regular malware when computing interim findings of threat landscape activity in African countries. They also eventually reach more people: for example, in South Africa, the virus would target 415,000 people in seven months, whereas PUA would target 736,000.

This specific danger, according to Geoffrey Cleaves, Head of Secure-D at Upstream, preys on the most susceptible.

“The fact that the virus is pre-installed on smartphones purchased in their millions by normally low-income households tells you all you need to know about what the business is now up against,” according to him.

According to Kaspersky’s research, three out of every ten devices are in danger of having undeletable applications on their phones, making them an ideal target for dangerous malware.

According to the Interpol Cybercrime COVID-19 Impact, phishing is the most serious concern worldwide, followed by malware and ransomware, harmful sites, and fake news. According to the research, the COVID-19-related attacks were mostly social engineering attempts.

Malware and adware may infiltrate devices in two ways. Freeware can install malicious software or advertising applications on a device.

Shareware is software that is shared for the purpose of the trial, whereas freeware is software that may be used for free. Users can obtain adware on their devices by visiting infected websites, which results in the download and installation of software that is never used.

PUA may be used to steal money from unknowing users in addition to spamming your device. According to the paper, PUA programs are not often deemed harmful in and of themselves. However, they typically have a detrimental impact on user experience.

Adware, for example, floods the user’s device with advertisements; aggressive monetization software spreads unrequested paid offers; and downloaders may install other, often harmful, apps on the

About Bukola Olanrewaju

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