Watch out! Malicious app developers making fake Adobe Flash Player installers (download from Adobe instead)


Adobe Flash Player’s end was inevitable, and we knew it was coming for a long time. The company’s product has been great to all Android users, but it is time to move to greener pastures. The product is no longer available, save for those who installed it before August 15th, and we know many of you must be missing it. You should be careful resorting to other methods to get Flash back, though, as multiple malicious Flash .apk files have been making rounds across the internet.

It seems we tend to desire that which is not available to us, and people are set on keeping Flash Player on their Android phones. This is where the bad guys come in, trying to cash in on eager Flash Player fans. Reports include multiple fake Flash apps, hitting your phones with adware and invading your personal information, as well as your notification bar (ads) and even your contacts.

So next time you are going around those third-party app stores (especially Russian ones), you should stop yourself and worry about your phone and private information. These fake apps are said to install a modified XDA version of Flash, so you would not even notice there was an issue, at first.

Instead of taking the risk, you should head over to Adobe’s official site for your download if you are still missing Flash. That is right! Adobe still has Flash Player for Android available from their very own website. The only caveat is that you will not be getting automatic updates from the Google Play Store when/if Adobe releases any bug-fixing updates. Sure beats getting a malicious app, though.

[Via: PC World]

Edgar Cervantes

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  1. I downloaded flash from the Play store today. I went to my apps from the phone and it was listed so installed it was.

  2. It’s there if you downloaded it previously from your account. If you set up a new account (ie – get a new device) it won’t be listed.

    1. I got my GS3 after the 15th when they said it was pulled. I was still able to download flash.

  3. how can you tell if you downloaded a malicious flash player app?

    1. As implied in this article, most of them will do the usual annoying but harmless stuff — install an advertising client (esp. the ‘push’ type like Airship), re-route your browser, spam your notification bar, etc.

      Obviously tho’, they could install something truly malicious …or steal your personal info. If in doubt, change your saved passwords and then install one of the big-name antivirus apps in Google’s Play Store.

      1. i havent been getting anything like that, i actually installed it on the 15th when people were saying it wouldnt be offered anymore..u think it could be malicious?

      2. is modaco one of the malicious offerers of adobe?

      3. Yep, I’ve installed an air-push app that detected one app that could place ads in my notification. Then I installed an Ad-Network app from LookOut.

        This app detected 5 more than the other, where LookOut identified apps tied to NEWORKS that that can take over your device. One takeover can replace your ringtone with voice ads that the person calling you hears instead of the ringing of your phone. I imagine this app can detect rogue-flash aps if the fake flash is linked to some server/network connected and collecting your personal unencrypted data.

  4. I have a droid 4 that I’ve kept on gingerbread until I can work out how to get flash on the ICS update. I was at the verizon store and tried installing flash 11.1 from the adobe archives, after allowing unknown sources, the installation worked. Then I tried to view flash material and all i got was legos. Any suggestions on a way to get flash on a droid 4 with ics?

    1. Which browser were you using? Flash doesn’t work with the Android version of Google’s Chrome browser…you have to use their generic ‘Browser’ or one of the 3rd-party offerings (Firefox, Dolphin, etc.). Also, it never hurts to dump cache and/or reboot the browser after installing Flash.

      One more thing: I’ve had issues with one of the recent Flash revs. (don’t ask; they’re all 11.-something), so I reverted to an older version. In fact, I always keep the older version’s APK on hand, for just such emergencies. The XDA website has one from last week; do a search for ‘Flash + Box’.

      1. I clicked “Browser” which i assumed was the stock still. I didn’t try dumping the cache or rebooting, the verizon sales men were starting to get antsy about what i was doing to their phone, maybe i’ll swing by and give it another try. Since the update for d4 to ics came out a few days after the 15th could that prevent it from working?

        1. Could be any of several things (including but not limited to your choice of ‘demo’ website), all of which are difficult to guess at from this distance.

          Are you sure the install went OK (ie: was Flash shown in the app drawer)? If it’s there, Adobe’s website lets you test the install. If the title animation plays, Flash is working.:

          1. Yep thats what I used for a test site, and it was in the app drawer. I also tried it on a razr maxx. Maybe the vzw store has their phones set up funny?
            To take things back towards the thread a little, is the archived 11.1 download on adobes site the best one out there? or are there other more device specific good .apks out there?

  5. Is one of these developers Modaco? I recently installed flash through their app that sniffs out the flash player apk that adobe has not taken off of their server? Anyone?

    1. yea thats what i installed too, modaco….

    2. Modaco is safe, and a very trusted dev. This article is really concerned about the non Play Store apps. Remember anything on the Play Store is 99.9% safe. If there is any doubt of an app there Google will pull it ASAP. I never use any third party app stores.

      1. The thing I wish Google would do is alert android app users which apps theyve pulled. I have never once seen a time where Google announce a rogue app pulled off the market. Ive always got the news elsewhere.

        Also, if google pulls the app and weve already downloaded it fromm Google (trusted site), does Google auto-uninstall from our devices the next timebwe log onto googleplay?

        We get no Google alerts of an app that could already be on our phones

        1. Why would you care? The apps were not on your phone.

          1. …and you responded because?… My comment was not addressed to you to get your approval to post my question…….bump.

  6. I have 11.1 for my latest version from Google Play and several older versions in MyBackupPro files. Which later version is officially the last version?

  7. I see GooglePlay no longer show my Flash update status. So will it still remain on Google Play for download to those on android versions older than 4.0?

    Yes, ive found the answer. It will still be there but new accounts and new devices wont have access to it. Whats replacing Flash on newer devices with android 4.0+ ?

    1. Nothing is and that is the issue. HTML5 is suppose to replace flash all across the web but since flash is so intergrated into the web its going to take forever to replace it for the majority of things and even then you can still find sites and files using much older versions of flash and so I doubt flash will be completely wiped out.

      1. I can see this causing some “disconnects” on the horizon too. You’d think if this was announced some time back, businesses and webmasters (are site devs still called “webmaster” today?) would have an upgrade plan that would inclide some sort of trigger to display html5 where the viewer browser is detected to support it, and switch to code that would toggle over to the last flash for display when a user/viewer’s browser doesnt detect html5.

        But I may be missing the mark and html5 may “it” as far as web browsing and no alternate as far as enduser browsing (i.e. I may no longer get a web page to load if I am still using explorer7 and forced to upgrade to what is accessible and only html5 with no parallel flashfile viewing capability)

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