Large-scale Empirical Study on Industrial Fake Apps
While there have been various studies towards Android app and its development, there is limited discussion of the broader class of apps that fall in fake area. Fake app and its development are distinct from official app and belong to the mobile underground industry. Due to the lack of knowledge of mobile underground industry, fake apps, its ecosystem and nature still remain in mystery.
To fill the blank, we conduct the first systematic and comprehensive empirical study on a large-scale set of fake apps. Over 150,000 samples that fake the top 50 popular apps are collected and extensively measured. In this paper, we present discoveries from three different perspectives, namely fake sample characteristics, quantitative study on fake samples and fake authors’ developing trend. Valuable domain knowledge, like fake apps’ naming tendency and fake developers’ evasive strategies, are then presented and confirmed with case studies, demonstrating a clear vision of fake app and its ecosystem.