Taking advantage of TikTok’s popularity, many miscreants are now taking its name to spoof people with malware.
The government has put a ban on 59 popular Chinese applications including TikTok over privacy concerns. Taking advantage of TikTok’s popularity, many miscreants are now taking its name to spoof people with malware. Many users in India are now getting messages via WhatsApp or SMS claiming that TikTok is available and people can use it in the form of TikTok Pro, which should be ignored. The messages are being circulated by cybercriminals as the TikTok is still banned.
The message that is being passed on reads, “Enjoy Tiktok video and create creative videos once again. Now TikTok is only available in (TikTok Pro) then download from below.” People are lured into clicking the link given in the message and download the TikTok Pro APK file. It is therefore advisable to not click on such links.
If anyone downloads the application from the link, an icon will appear which is the same as the original TikTok app. It also asks for permissions to image gallery, mic, camera and others. When the permissions are granted, the application does not work and simply stays on phone. These applications are not available on Google Play and therefore, users are asked to download the APK file to install it. Applications like these are capable of stealing user IDs of other popular social media accounts and other private information easily.
Cybersecurity concerns in India have been on a rise and as many as 25 Android apps have been removed from Google Play store. According to cybersecurity firm Evina, these applications on Google were stealing Facebook login details of users. The banned applications were used by over 2 million people and had malwares that kept a record of Facebook login details when used from phones.
It is to note that till the government lifts the ban from TikTok, the application’s original version will not be available in the country.