"Tether, a start-up that offers dollar-backed digital tokens." "Tether is a controversial cryptocurrency with tokens issued by Tether Limited, which in turn is controlled by the owners of Bitfinex. Tether Limited formerly falsely claimed that each token was backed by one United States dollar, but on 14 March 2019 changed the backing to include loans to affiliate companies." "Originally launched as Realcoin and later rebranded, Tether aims to serve as a proxy for the US dollar that can be sent between exchanges, notably including Bitfinex, Poloniex and other markets without fiat trading." "USDT is a cryptocurrency token pegged to the US dollar, which is [purported to be] fully backed by assets in the company’s reserve account."


"Back in November 2018, malware researcher Lukas Stefanko found four fake crypto wallets on the Google Play Store that were posing as official pieces of software for neo, tether and metamask."


"[T]hese fake wallets were created using Drag-n-Drop app builder service without any coding knowledge required." "Stefanko noted that the apps were developed using the Drag-n-Drop app builder service, which does not require specific coding knowledge from the user. This means that nearly anyone is able to “develop” a simple malicious app to steal sensitive personal data, “once the Bitcoin (BTC) price rises,” according to Stefanko."


"Android PlayStore (from user POV) only allows to order reviews "highest first" but not "lowest first", and it's not possible to filter e.g. "only 1 star reviews"."


"In short, a scam app that actively manipulates reviews makes it [difficult] for the user to learn it's a scam."


"The fake crypto wallets reportedly did not create a new wallet through generating a public address and a private key — which are needed to securely send and receive digital currency — but only displayed the attacker’s public address with no user access to the private key. Thinking that the app generated their public address, users would deposit their funds to that wallet, but were unable to withdraw them as the private key belonged to a cybercriminal."


"Fake cryptocurrency wallets do not create new wallet by generating public address and private key. These malicious apps only display attacker’s public address without user’s access to private key. Private key is owned by the bad guy. Once the fake app is launched, user thinks that app already generated his public address where user can deposit his cryptocurrency. If user send his funds to this wallet, he is not able to withdraw them because, he doesn’t own private key. For this purpose, I created two different accounts, however in both of them app assign me the same public address, including the QR code."


"The analyst states in the post that he reported the fake apps to the Google security team, after which the wallets were subsequently removed."

A fake Tether wallet was discovered on the Google Play store. The wallet would provide all users with the same wallet address, which was owned by the attacker. This was displayed as a deposit address, with withdrawals not possible. It is unknown how much Tether was taken from unsuspecting users. There is no report of any funds being recovered.


Always download wallets from the official source if possible. Typically, their primary website will direct you to the correct application. Check for recent negative reviews that report an application being a scam in the recent reviews history. Check to ensure an application has been available for an expected amount of time, and has a reasonable number of downloads. Once a wallet is set up, for any new wallet, always make a test transaction with a small amount of funds and a test withdrawal before using the wallet. Keep the majority of funds stored offline and only use mobile or PC-based wallets for funds you are actively using.


Check Our Framework For Safe Secure Exchange Platforms

Sources And Further Reading

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