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Photo: tomeqs (Shutterstock) Malware is no fun (some would say it bytes , if they were very funny). If installed on your Android device, malware can steal data, mess with functionality, and, on top of it all, trick your phone into installing more malware. Nobody intentionally downloads malware onto their phone, but it can be trickier than you think to spot it in the wild. Luckily, there are resources to help. Joker malware is a problem One of the biggest malware issues facing Android is Joker, the nickname for a bit of malicious code hackers love to attach to innocuous looking apps in the Play Store. These apps will ask for permissions to access way more of your data than they should, but they won’t actually take advantage of those permissions right away. Instead, they’ll lie in wait for some time before installing Joker malware onto your device. This is called a “dropper” attack. Once Joker is installed on your device, it can quietly sign you up for premium subscription services (which you won’t even realize unless you check your credit card statement) and/or send data from your device back to the hackers; contact information, text messages, and other important and sensitive information is all fair game in this scenario. How to spot a potential Joker app Fortunately, you don’t have to blindly hope the next app you download is safe and Joker-free. Instead, just follow Tatyana Shishkova on Twitter . Shishkova (@sh1shk0va) is an Android malware analyst for […]