Google PlayMobile gambling has taken off during the last few years as players from around the world enjoy the convenience of accessing an online casino app and playing their favourite casino games while on the move. All of the top online casinos and sports betting websites tend to have a dedicated gaming app that is available for download in both the App Store and Google Play Store.

Google and Apple pay special attention to gambling related apps and have a stringent vetting process to ensure that only safe and reliable gambling apps get approved. This has proven to be a huge deterrent to illegal gambling operators who are prevented from launching their gambling apps.

It appears that these illegal operators have found a way around the vetting process. Illegal operators have used masked apps to beat the reviewing process of the App and Google Play store and as a result their gambling apps have been downloaded by thousands of users from around the world.

The way the process works is that these illegal gambling operators get approval from legitimate apps that cover domains like travel, wine, fitness and weather. Once a user downloads these apps, they would operate in a normal fashion for a period of time and then the built in code takes over and starts prompting users to download gambling related apps.

Some of these masked apps featured in the Top 100 list in both the Google Play Store and Apple App store and have over 100,000 downloads.

App Store And Google Play Store Take Action

These findings were discovered a team of cybersecurity researchers from Trend Micro. The researchers stated that when they tried out these apps, they loaded WebView to launch a gambling website and did not run any malicious software on the device being used to load the app.

The modus-operandi of these shady developers were reported by Trend Micro to both the App Store and Google Play store, who were quick to take action. Both companies have confirmed that they have now carried out a clean-up operation and got rid of all masked gambling apps.

Apple confirmed that the developers behind these masked apps were also blacklisted and their names have been sent to the App Developer Program for termination. However, both Google and Apple are yet to confirm what measures they have put in place to ensure that no more masked apps get approved.

Categories: Casino News

Posted on: 30th September 2019 by: Gary Beachley