30
Mar
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If there is one thing I despise in the world of Android, it is piracy and specifically Android sites that let you download paid apps, oftentimes for a monthly membership fee. Most Android developers are not large corporations, but rather independent, smalltime individuals to whom every download counts. Today's story, therefore, gives me added pleasure, because in it, pirates are implicated in one of the most embarrassing ways I can imagine.

An application, masking itself as a non-existent version of the paid app called Walk and Text, was uploaded to multiple pirate Android app markets across North America and Asia. This time, those who downloaded it for free and expected what users would normally get after paying $1.54 in the official Android Market, got a bit of a surprise. And boy, is it embarrassing!

After displaying a "Cracking..." dialog, which in reality just collects and sends out personal data (such as the name, phone number, IMEI, etc), the app sends out the following text message to all of the user's address book contacts:

Hey,just downlaoded a pirated App off the Internet, Walk and Text for Android. Im stupid and cheap,it costed only 1 buck.Don't steal like I did!

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The text above, as you can see, is written in very broken English, either for added lulz or because pranksters don't have time to sit in a library all day (OK?). To finish the flustered user off, the app display the following dialog, using surprisingly much more proper English (thus making the SMS sent to all contacts that much more evil):

Application Not Licensed

We really hope you learned something from this. Check your phone bill ;) Oh and dont forget to buy the App from the Market

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And this, my friends, is how you properly troll the pirates.

Oh, and enjoy the free advertising, Walk and Text. You deserved it (unless this was a genius marketing campaign, in which case I take it all back!).

Update: Incorporate Apps, the company behind the real Walk and Text reached out to us to let everyone know they are in no way approving of or related to the rogue app. Here is what they said (with some of my formatting changes for readability):

Hello,
We are a bit surprised about this publicity. We are the makers of the OFFICIAL Walk and Text app. We also received some questions whether we have anything to do with this file.

And the answer is NO, we do not!

This could very well be seen from the signature of the file (reported on some other forum) and from the code structure. Anyone, anywhere, can get a hold of our APK and rip it and put what they want in it.

Truth is our App got hacked 2 months ago 1 week after it was launched, we removed all of the files from the fileservers, DMCA reports and everything, took us 2 weeks. Then the hackers obviously decided to get back at us and put bad publicity on our side. This file is not to be found on public fileservers (not to our knowledge, email us if you find anything).

We only find the files on some Asian torrents (and rapidshare as google alerts reports). There is nothing we can do about this file.
please do not download files from outside the Market, or at least check the permissions.

Our OFFICIAL App doesn’t even ask for the Internet permission, how are we going to send private information anywhere?!?

With that said, the original blog posts come from 2 anti piracy companies, AVAST and Symantec. They even insisted that the file was found on the Android Market. Symantec quotes a copy of the License Verification Structure, LVL, to be something an official App has. Well yeah of course, if they rip our App, you will see LVL in there… I leave it to you to do the math and their integrity about this situation.

We were never contacted for a comment prior to their blog posts!

We are sorry to be involved and we did not ask for this publicity and once again have nothing to do with this!

Source: Symantec

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Kable

    You're a dou che bag for promoting this behavior. I agree that Piracy is very bad on Android but I just can't help but believe a few innocents will cross paths with this app and have to deal with the consequences. Like a potential job lead in their contacts, their pastor ect.

    • Telanis

      If you download something on the internet, you take the risk that it's malicious. Deal with it.

    • wp7isthebest

      Innocents? Ah yeah poor guys, accidentally going to a site that distributes pirated Android apps, accidentally downloading this pirated app, accidentally installing it, and then accidentally using it.

      • KenpoAP

        TRUE TRUE! If you knowingly go to this sites it is not an accident!

    • Laythor

      I dunno, if I was going to hire someone i'd kind of like to know that deep down they were a thief.

      And how does someone pay lip service to any faith while at the same time they're stealing from their fellow man?

      • Mucker

        You're surprised that a religious person could be hypocritical?!?

    • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

      Hello,
      We are a bit surprised about this publicity.
      We are the makers of the OFFICIAL Walk and Text app.
      We also received some questions wether we have anything to do with this file.
      And the answer is NO, we do not!
      This could very well be seen from the signature of the file (reported on some other forum) and from the code structure.
      Anyone, anywhere, can get a hold of our APK and rip it and put what they want in it.
      Truth is our App got hacked 2 months ago 1 week after it was launched, we removed all of the files from the fileservers, DMCA reports and everything, took us 2 weeks. Then the hackers obviously decided to get back at us and put bad publicity on our side. This file is not to be found on public fileservers (not to our knowledge, email us if you find anything)
      We only find the files on some Asian torrents (and rapidshare as google alerts reports)
      There is nothing we can do about this file.
      please do not download files from outside the Market, or at least check the permissions.
      Our OFFICIAL App doesn’t even ask for the Internet permission, how are we going to send private information anywhere?!?
      With that said, the original blog posts come from 2 anti piracy companies, AVAST and Symantec. They even insisted that the file was found on the Android Market. Symantec quotes a copy of the License Verification Structure, LVL, to be something an official App has. Well yeah of course, if they rip our App, you will see LVL in there… I leave it to you to do the math and their integrity about this situation.
      We were never contacted for a comment prior to their blog posts!
      We are sorry to be involved and we did not ask for this publicity and once again have nothing to do with this!

      • Alan

        Really interesting that your mistakes in grammar and language are very similar to the grammatical errors in Trojan app that you have no knowledge and no nothing about.

        If you really have nothing to do with the app, and you know nothing about it, and your looking for answers, I am not sure why your expecting the companies you have called out to contact you ?. What information can you give them if you know nothing. By the way its AV companies not anti piracy companies.

        Also Symantec/AVAST dint say it was found on the Android Market, they said it was found in file share site. Learn to read. You really sure you dint make this as a result of getting back at people pirating your app..

        Funny your comments here, indicate you track people

        http://forum.mobilism.org/viewtopic.php?p=700428

        "we can even identify you based on the purchases you made"

        Admit it, you got caught shit head.

        • Michael

          Hmmm, one who uses the non-word "dint" (twice) and doesn't know the difference between "no" and "know" probably shouldn't be calling someone out on their grammar and telling them to "learn how to read"...just sayin'

        • Alan

          Oh snap Micheal, you got me... But hey you get my point, thats what counts.

  • Mark

    I don't support piracy but I don't support this prank either. Two wrongs don't make a right.

    • Laythor

      Three left's make a right

      • PaulB

        Actually, three lefts make a U turn

        • Laythor

          i'll give you a second to rethink your driving skills

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          Lmao.

        • shawn

          Uhhh, not so much, go look at a grid system layout then come on back when you figured out why 2 lefts make a U-Turn (albeit a block away) where 3 makes a right turn. (I drove truck, 3 lefts were sometimes safer than 1 right.)

        • Michael

          No, actually, 3 lefts make a right. 4 lefts make a u-turn.

        • Michael

          No, wait. Sorry. 4 lefts doesn't make a u-turn, just burns time and puts u back where u were. Haha.

  • Joe

    Wait it says to check their phone bill, what did it put on the bill.

    • Tyler

      The article says everyone in the contact list got sent a text : Hey,just downlaoded a pirated App off the Internet, Walk and Text for Android. Im stupid and cheap,it costed only 1 buck.Don’t steal like I did!

      Image if they dont have a text plan or if they have friends out of the country with there downloaded facebook number?

      hilarious post Artem!

      • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

        They would get charged a few cents or a $1 in that rare case - sure. Minor collateral damage, which is not really the point.

        If it helps deter people from downloading pirated apps, the pranksters' job is done - they don't care about texts sent to the wrong people.

        I'm not saying this is the best way to fight piracy or that we should see more and more apps like that, but this is a story, and it's here, and it's real, so we'll all have to deal with it whether we like it or not.

        • scottishwildcat

          It would probably cost me about €50 to send a text to everyone in my address book, and that's probably true of most prepay customers, in this part of the world at least.

  • Gabezermeno

    Wow... that's horrible. It's bad to pirate an app, but you shouldn't advertise they're childish behavior.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It was reported on a Symantec security blog. Publishing it is as much advertising as publishing any other story, except it's inherently more entertaining due to added humor in the messages and the whole concept of this troll.

  • http://dangerismymiddlename.com Paul Danger KILE

    What would you think if they intended to both market the app, and shame the warez people?

    I think that this is risky. Some people will start believing that the real app is fake based on reading about this in forums.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It's a possibility, but I really doubt they would take the risk themselves.

  • dave

    Stupid. And what's even stupider is that it was obviously the makers of this app who also released the dodgy pirated version.
    I can understand their frustrations, but for their sake I hope they're living in some backwater in China, because if they're in Europe or the US they're likely to be sued into oblivion.
    This is not only excessive but outright illegal (and no, it is not justified by the illegality of the original act of piracy). Google should boot the makers out of the market.

    • ari-free

      They should just shut the pirates down.

      • dave

        I completely agree. Every effort should be made to shut down pirate sites. They should also shut down the sort of people who install malicious software on somebody's phone, regardless of motive.

        I fully intend to report this not only to Google but to the relevant authorities. Depending on local legislation, the developers of Walk and Text could potentially see jail time behind this.

        • ari-free

          If anything happens to Walk and text and the pirates get off scot free, every legit developer will say F you google for doing NOTHING about piracy.

        • econundrum

          Only if someone can prove the Developers of Walk and Text where envolved which is no more than an assumption on your part.

          Google and the legal authorities are not going to do anything to a developer on the grounds an unidentified party posted a malware app with the name of their app on a third party site.

          But by all means report it should lead to an investigation of the people running the pirate site though I very much doubt it will prove involvement of Walk and text Developer. It was probably just choosen as an app people would think needed texting permission to allow the spam and if they are guilty which I doubt then fair enough both them and the pirates go down.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I don't think it's that obvious at all - in fact, I think it's highly unlikely for exactly the reasons you specified.

      And I completely agreed - Google should be able to user their power to take them down. They have lawyers, they have the money - they just need to be proactive about it. Sites like Applanet are run by teenagers who are very careless - their identities are in the open, so they can be taken down very easily.

      • Gabezermeno

        I didn't know about applanet until now... thanks a bunch :)

      • ffps

        thanks for tye applanet mention! you moron.

  • http://dangerismymiddlename.com Paul Danger KILE

    Imagine Microsoft doing this. Would that cause an uprising? If so, then don't do it.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      You mean imagine someone submitting an app that does something similar to one of the warez sites? Why is Microsoft even in the picture at all in that situation?

  • Anakin78z

    I approve. You can't steal a loaf of bread and complain about an upset stomach later.
    People who steal a one dollar app deserve to get pranked.

    • ari-free

      I think pirates should also have their phone warranties voided.

  • ari-free

    I can see it now: a curated appstore for pirated apps

  • Logan

    People are DEFINITELY going to buy this app after being embarrassed.
    Nothing warms consumers to a product like public humiliation!

    /sarcasm

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Nobody said those people who fell "victim" to this will buy it, but no matter who really published the app, the real makers will get some press out of it, however big or small it is. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if it was trending on Appbrain soon.

  • alex

    this is .... innovation !
    by the way stop blaming the devs, they did it for the lulz and it was pefectly justified !

  • sam bowen

    I didn't know they had pirate sites for Android apps, thanks :)

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Ha, I was waiting for someone to say this.

      • xploited

        no, but seriously, I haven't heard about applanet until now. :D

        so, buy doing this prank they also gave publicity to the pirate app sites that people didn't know about :P

        • ThumbTug

          crAppPlanet can become a poisoned well if flooded with enough of these morphed Sting-Trolls, soon leading to an unnatural and very painful death ";0))

          Props to the Vanguard Vigilantes who have shown the way, nice work!

    • econundrum

      Good luck with them, even when the app looks like the real app doesn't mean some malware wasn't tagged onto it and just hasn't done anything visible yet.

      It's enough of a worry on the Market, but when dealing with a source who is by definition a known criminal who knows what you'll end up running on your phone.

  • Adam

    Awesome. I have no sympathy for cheapskates who feel entitled to have everything they want for free. If you were concerned about professional contact relationships being ruined perhaps you should grow the hell up and either pay for things you want OR DON'T GET IT.

  • Dark Wizard Matoya

    On the one hand this is childish and immature and there is a real risk that people will think that the real app is malicious as well. On the other hand I have zero sympathy for the pirates and if you are cheap/stupid enough to download pirated apps then you get what you deserve.

  • David

    The people that are mad are the pirates. This is hilarious and I'm glad they did it.

    • dave

      Bullshit.

      The people who are mad are the people who recognise that illegality should not be met with further illegality.

      We also recognise that the devs are clearly an immature and thoughtless bunch who are willing to break the law to suit their needs (just like the pirates, right? ).

      Who says they wouldn't be willing to bend or break other regulations if it suited them? They may think they're striking a blow against piracy but the only thing they're really hurting is their own credibility.

      • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

        You're assuming it was the original app's devs who did it, which i find highly unlikely.

        • dave

          Well we'll wait and see I suppose. For their sake I would hope they weren't behind it. Digital fingerprints are hard to hide.

      • http://ukstokes.com/blog Ben

        "We also recognise that the devs are clearly an immature and thoughtless bunch who are willing to break the law to suit their needs"

        I don't get it. What are they doing to break the law, exactly? And do you really think they could be taken to court considering the circumstances and site used to download the 'fake' app?

        When the app was installed they would have seen the permissions it uses, i.e. access phone book, send sms. They woudn't have a legal leg to stand on.

        Personally I find this amusing and applaud this move. People who download pirate apps instead of paying 99p to the dev deserve what they get.

        • Davidus

          Good call on ''seen the permissions'', no legal leg at all. Not even a peg leg. (Insert additional eye patch, walk the plank, or Captain Jack Sparrow reference here.) Surprised we haven't seen any yet.

          Only in a civil case would there be any possible retribution, and even that's far-fetched.

  • John J

    Super hilarious. All the pirates should stop crying.

    The people who fell for this got what they deserved.

  • http://collegeanon.tk azurikai

    oh would the weenies shut up that hate this prank. pirates deserve that shit. quit hatin'

  • Laythor

    Zero sympathy to people who knowingly download a pirated app and get punked for it.

    Stealing, no matter how small the amount, is theft. Once you've made the conscience decision to become a thief then you reap what you sow.

  • Jason

    ya... google should be able to stop all the pirates out there since they have money and lawyers... look at the movie and music industries! they have pirates completely under control!!! (insert sarcasm...)

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      There are very few pirate Android markets, with even fewer really big ones - if Google did anything about them at all, it would both get rid of the ones that hurt them the most and send a message to the rest.

      Pirating a movie is easy - anybody can do it. Pirating an app and cracking protection is not nearly as easy, so it's an inherently smaller market to squash.

  • Edward

    Extremely stupid way to fight piracy.... Can't believe anybody promotes it....

    • econundrum

      I agree, I just don't feel sorry for the people who got caught by it.

      Feeling sorry for a pirate who downloads malware thinking his stealing a real app; would be like feeling sorry for a thief because he cut his hand while smashing my car window to steal the stereo.

  • ione

    in some country (like mine), you can only download free apps from market, stupid google dont let us buy apps, so here we have a good reason for piracy. Give us the posibility to buy first and then we can talk piracy

    • anthony heron

      Agreed. Also they could reduce piracy by sorting out the stupid return policy if you don't like an app, and the bank charges people in the uk have to pay if they want to by an app. I'm sick of being charged an extra £1.50 each time I buy an app

    • eTiMaGo

      I have to agree with this one, I am lucky to have a Google Checkout account through a friend in the US, but for those who can't use this, and wanna buy an app for their Android phone, what are they to do?

    • Mnotme

      Using market enabler or temporarily using a sim-card from a country where paid apps are available (and downloading thru wifi) solves that problem.

      Or for that matter buying the app directly from the developer.

      Pirating might be easier (for you) but it is in no way the only option you have to get paid apps.

  • Taylor

    Although I can't condone the behavior of developers of this ninja app (ninjas hunt pirates, right?), I still think it's completely awesome and utterly hilarious!

  • DJ

    Im a Business and Political Lawyer and I personally understand the immorality in getting these apps illegally i also think that those people should be brought to light to the FBI or directly to Google. Thats and google can do with them as they like. But I also believe that if someone wants to download apps illegally on their computer for use on their phone then that is their right to do so, yet by doing so they should know that they are stealing pettty theft which is a misdeamenor crime period with little to no fine usually a slap on wrist. Know whoever did this with the app and putting peoples information like this can be looking @ major jail time on many charges such as Embezzlement, digital forgery, harassment, identity theft, Larceny, and many other White collar crimes, because last time i checked by putting out soemones number you now can harasss them what if it was their childs phone? How would you guys like it if it was your childs phone or your wifes? and some random person keeps callign and texting etc. I just feel this is over board and legal action needs to be taken. I can help build and defend you in court against the original source of this file. As i also have many friends with power email me @ my personal e-mail on this matter d.hawk012@gmail.com if you have been a victim here. And again im sorry for the Devs because of theses people that steal but, only because you still doesnt mean you deserve to have your simple persoanl liberties infringed upon. Sorry for bad english very tired

    • appelflap

      please use your energy and powerful friends to advice developers and market owners. It seems way more logical to prevent this than to plea for a punishment spiral.

    • econundrum

      Way to ambulance chases guy ;-), and good luck with that you at least should make some money out of it.

      I sort of doubt the apps poster will be tracked down by the authorities or Google, since the source of any information about them would be inherently untrust worthy e.g. those who run a pirate software site who would also be trying to avoid the attention of the authorities themselves.

      Although I do agree it’s a silly way to fight piracy and illegal download sites could be including all sort of more subtle and malicious code with the ripped apps anyway so long term app pirates will probably get their just deserts with no need for pranks like this.

    • Tom

      I doubt you are any type of attorney.

      With your incorrect spellings and incorrect punctuations, in addition to your inability to make more than one paragraph, I doubt you even passed English in high school much less a Bar exam.

      If I am wrong however, I would love to see some of the Legal Briefs you have filed. I am sure we could all get quite a laugh from them.

    • ThumbTug

      WTF is a 'Business and Political Lawyer'?!? ~ a new euphemism for 419er?

      Your (non-)command of English marks you out as a grifter graduate of the Lagos School of Law Scams.

      very tired == very lame effort

  • Mnotme

    Awesome. :)

    Shaming has always been an effective deterrent. It wont stop people from pirating stuff but it will make em think twice before they decide to "steal" something.

  • hmmmright

    nobody replied to the posts about the countries where you can't buy apps, i'm happy to live where it works but what about the people without market (paid)? they can go f...rell themselves? "oh that's too bad" won't cut it for them. i don't think piracy is ok, especially for one silly buck but sometimes there's no other way to get the paid apps. *shrug* i think it was pretty immature and maybe not really thought out on part of the devs or whoever made this app. i'll steer clear from the app, just in case ;)

    • http://ukstokes.com/blog Ben

      It's not an excuse for piracy. They can use Market Enabler (free app, just google for it), or they can contact devs direct who usually offer alternate ways of paying for the apps. I accept that google doesn't make it easy for everyone but seriously, people should try and show some integrity before going straight to the pirate market sites.

      • hmmmright

        isn't market enabler for rooted phones only? i don't see your average numpty rooting their phone just to get access to paid apps. not to mention that in some countries enabler is illegal. hardly a solution.

    • eTiMaGo

      One guy said we should find American SIM cards or use Market Enabler... That does not solve the Google Checkout problem. I am lucky to have a friend in the US let me use his account, but not everyone can do this. If Android wants to be a major player on the world stage and curb app piracy, this has got to change, plain and simple...

  • stamatis

    Since when is anyone but the state authorised to punish this kind of "theft" ?

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      The judicial system may be authorized to punish, but companies, such as Google, are well within their rights to initiate investigations, sue, and protect their and their customers' intellectual properties.

      • stamatis

        I know i am not talking about google, but the company that used (alegedly?) a pirated app to punish the pirates.

  • macs

    Google have promoted piracy by reducing the return period to 15 mins. Many people install pirated apps to check them out before buying. This may infact reduce application sales. People who use pirated software that costs $1 are never going to buy it anyway so why drive these more honest customers away. Also there are apps out there that tie pirated apps to the market people who often used pirated software do this attack would never happen.

    There is so much crap on the Market that consumers need a trial period, Google and devs are to blame the trial period and crap software.

    • Stajdanley

      Right, because you get a trial period when you buy a DVD, CD, PC software. Research before you buy and count your losses if you get a lemon... it's a dollar or two, people.

      • macs

        I buy my PC software, DVDs' etc from reputable dealers who's products are subject to the law. That's a lot different from the fly by night developers on the marketplace. If I purchase anything online in most of Europe I have the legal right to return it within 7 days.

    • brian

      The return policy isn't intended as a trial period. Many paid apps have a lite version that serves as that purpose.

      The 15 minutes is to protect people from downloading obvious crap which should be apparent in a few minutes.

    • michael

      I agree with you 100%

  • Josh H.

    The same douchbags bitching about stealing apps most likely have tons of pirated music and movies. I hope the next time you play some random track your ipod explodes.

    • Morality

      Hahhah, Amen, Josh H.

      • Davidus

        Wait, cause of the pirated music? Or cause it's an ipod?

    • hmmmright

      hahah, i fully agree

  • http://www.aaandroid.com/ BrooklynAvi

    I thought about posting a malicious version of my app on those forums (and mine is a root app so I could have really done damage) but I realized that it is wrong and there is the (really) off chance that a noob simply didn't know he was doing something wrong. Even without that, this is just not the solution to the problem.

  • Pegger

    Piracy is bad, but making an app that sends sms to all your contacts without you knowing, is as bad as writting a virus and releasing it. (If there was no funny trolling in it, the post would be completly different full of warnings etc...)

    This means, the app is a virus! and virus writters are as even worser then pirates, If the catch him he should be triald like any other virus writter the catch, pay the damage done and pay all legal fees.

    Same for pirates, if the catch you stealing, you should pay for the damage done.

    • econundrum

      I agree, but I don't feel sorry for the people who downloaded it. After all this was a site dedicated to distributing stolen software. Why do people think if someone is willing to rip off developers they won't also be willing to rip of end users?

      This guy did people downloading from these sites a favour by pointing out in a way that cost them little the risk of giving an unknown app from a pirate site that sort of access to their phone. I could instead have texted to preminum rate services for example or any number of other thing that would have allowed him to steal money from the user.

      Even on the official market since it runs on an honour system users should always consider what permissions an app wants, but when downloading from a site that advertises itself as a priate site people should think a thousand times.

  • econundrum

    I feel perfectly justified in complaing about app stealing and don't have any ripped of music or movies either.

    simple logic should tell you that if your downloading something from a site for stolen software the people your downloading from are not the most moral or trust worthy of people, so if you run into malware it's your own fault really you know the sort of people your dealing with.

    Frankly I think twice about downloading an app from the official market and always think about the permissions I'm granting.

    I agree that stealing apps is even worse than stealing music or movies because you are stealing from small independent operators a lot of the time for which every sale counts rather than corporate titans. Both are wrong but stealing from the little guy is worse.

  • http://www.sillycube.com sillycube

    great risk to download pirate app. Virus, malware, ..... Hope the users will eventually understand the risks they are taking

  • Álmos

    I support piracy. So fuck you.

    • Whirliebird

      And I support stabbing you in the balls so you can't fuck me. See how this works?

      • portnoyd

        That makes absolutely no sense.

      • Zohan

        Technically, even after stabbing him in the balls, he could still fuck you.. Just saying.. :p

        • ThumbTug

          If you can manage to stab his balls right *OFF*, then no, he'd just be blowing bubbles up ur bum

          [NB: some people may like that]

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Fuck you right back then.

    • appelflap

      LOL you do know that "support" doesn't mean anything in the land of the pirates? You may "support" the pirates but if they have a bad day they might screw you as well.

      I wouldn't be surprised if the app itself is produced by pirates. That's how thing go in the land where you can trust nobody. So good luck with your "support".

  • Jaymoon

    Really? Pranking pirates? Not a good choice for somebody that is trying to make a living by selling their app.

    It takes all but 30 seconds to find the "legitimate" app in the Market, and report it as one that steals data. Whether it gets enough flags to be pulled is up to Google, but fake 1-star reviews can do just as much damage.

    I'm just saying that if an app did that to me, not only would I never go near it again (certainly wouldn't make me want to pay for the real version), but I would make it my new day job to destroy this developer (whether it was him involved or not).

    ...But then again, I'm not somebody who would do that, so there's no need to worry from my actions.

    :)

    • hmmmright

      i wouldn't go as far as destroying but yeah, you're kind of right, definitely right about steering clear from that app, i didn't know it existed until i read this article but it sure put me off from even trying it out so yea - bummer for the dev.

  • Bobby Sweethearts

    A. What these Devs did is no different than Large Record Labels putting corrupted or virus filled music on to a P2P file sharing network
    B. I seriously doubt that Google will care that these "apps" since they were put on the pirated android market to begin with, they tend to only care about apps that make there way in to the official market.
    C. These Devs will only need to worry about the fact of the app sending out a mass text if they did not cover them selves in the permissions of the app that everyone hits okay to and never really reads.
    D. Who ever that " Laywer" is needs to learn how to spell and use proper grammar.

    • econundrum

      A. You have no proof at all it was the devs of the real app. Could have been someone who just picked an app people would give text permission too.

      B. True, nor should they care if they start policing third party sites selling ripped off apps then it means the condone them.

      C. True, people installing this app did grant it permission to send Text messages so do they have legal grounds to complain that it did? Then again it was misrepresenting what it would use that permission for.

      D. True, but be careful he has powerful friends; maybe a Jedi or a Sith lord ;-).

  • Urhm

    Wow.. Not using this site again. How can you promote something like this, which is probably as illegal as piracy? Watch how google removes this app and blocks the developers of the original paid app....
    But ye, not visiting this site again, bye.

    • Timothy

      k. you won't be missed..

    • squiddy

      From what I understood of the article, the devs of the app didn't release it onto the official Android Market. They put on the pirate markets. So, 1 Google can't remove the fake app since its not on their market, 2 it is not explicitly stated if the Walk and Text devs are behind this or not and without proof, Google can't do anything about that either. Why don't you READ the article instead of just skimming it? The way I see it, the devs of this fake app, whoever they may be, took the name and reputation of the real app. Was that wrong? A bit, yes. But beyond that, the rest of the app is original work, none of it is the same as the real app. Therefore, it isn't really pirated software. Same app name, completely different code. This is essentially the same as someone uploading Katy Perry's song Teenage Dream to a p2p site, but then naming it and giving it all the attributes of Metallica's Enter Sandman. Wrong? Yes. Illegal? Not from my understanding of it. Its all just a practical joke played on the pirates/thieves. Get over yourself.

      • Alan

        Thank you squiddy, finally someone who can read. Take advice from squiddy Incorporatedapps, its clear as daylight no one said this virus was on the Android Market and no one said your software was a virus, stop telling propel to remove post and stop threating people, it really just makes you look more guilty.

      • Alan

        Thank you squiddy, finally someone who can read. Take advice from squiddy Incorporatedapps, its clear as daylight no one said this virus was on the Android Market and no one said your software was a virus, stop telling propel to remove post and stop threating people, it really just makes you look more guilty.

        Just admit that you made a virus because you got mad at a couple of people on the mobilism forum. Think about it, why would anyone target you, there are so many other applications, plus why does this virus link to buy your application directly... Admit it dude you did it

        • squiddy

          Alan, please do not associate yourself with me. In all respect, you seem too highly opinionated and accusatory for your own good. Do yourself a favor and stop asking for trouble. Whatever point(s) you were trying to get across in your comments below could have been made without coming off as a complete a**.
          By the way, the fake app, from my understanding, is NOT a virus. Look up the definition and educate yourself. For a malicious program to be a virus, it must be able to replicate itself and infect another computer. Taken straight from Wikipedia: "The term 'virus' is also commonly but erroneously used to refer to other types of malware, including but not limited to adware and spyware programs that do not have the reproductive ability." From the brief snippet I read about here, all the fake app does is send a harmless text to all of the people in the contact list. I could hardly describe these actions as qualifications for it being a virus...

        • AlanQuan

          Squiddy you raise a valid point, let me clear the air here, my fights not with you. But you are right I am being an Ass, here is why. You called my comments accusatory, here is what incorporate apps been going around saying on the links I have posted about AVAST.

          "Georgi Tanmazov

          I could very well imagine company like AVAST putting such trojans on the loose for Apps that are being popular."

          Cant get more accusatory than that. Regarding you reference to the term "virus". I was referring to his comments from one of his previous posts.

          My points not to come down on him, because clearly English inst his native language. (Hes been calling Anti Virus software Anti Piracy software in all his posts and just changed that term when I caught him here on his website) I am being an Ass because I cant stand the fact that he thinks its ok to go around accusing other people, threatening them with lawsuits, ask them to remove posts unless he gets his say. But when it come to the other way around (http://incorporateapps.com/wat.php) he refuses to remove comments he has made other people accusing them of creating Trojans to further a sale. I cant tolerate that.

          By the way, just so you know the term fake app or virus is incorrect here. This is a "Trojan". Only reason I keep on referring to it as a virus is because I am quoting him.

          Enough Said.

  • kokopelli

    While I agree that this tactic is not appropriate or ethical, I also have no sympathy for those who installed the app. The people who installed it did so with knowledge and intent to receive software to which they did not have a license. For those living in a country without paid apps there are options other than piracy, as has been mentioned in the comments.

    But please do not compare this to a virus. It is malware, not a virus. This does not self replicate infecting other systems so the "threat" is contained to those who knowingly downloaded and installed it. There is a huge difference between the two.

    • econundrum

      I agree completely with everything you say here. Important to point out it's not a virus and is only effecting those who knowingly downloaded unlicensed software, that they could have bought without the malware for a tiny cost.

      • Dude

        If you haven't noticed the big screenshot at the top of the page, hes costing people money by spamming people in their contact database. Call it what you may, its not right. You cant do that, two wrongs dont make a right.

  • Force

    @Bobby:
    I love D. :D
    As a dev I'm obviously against piracy, however in my opinion this behaviour of that app is definitely inmature and very similar to malware.
    I mean, this thing collects your name, IMEI etc and sends it somewhere, as well as spamming all your contacts, damaging your reputation and costing a lot of money (at least it would in my case as I have a lot of friends overseas).
    So, piracy is not good, that this isn't better at all.

  • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

    Hello,
    We are a bit surprised about this publicity.
    We are the makers of the OFFICIAL Walk and Text app.
    We also received some questions wether we have anything to do with this file.
    And the answer is NO, we do not!
    This could very well be seen from the signature of the file (reported on some other forum) and from the code structure.
    Anyone, anywhere, can get a hold of our APK and rip it and put what they want in it.
    Truth is our App got hacked 2 months ago 1 week after it was launched, we removed all of the files from the fileservers, DMCA reports and everything, took us 2 weeks. Then the hackers obviously decided to get back at us and put bad publicity on our side. This file is not to be found on public fileservers (not to our knowledge, email us if you find anything)
    We only find the files on some Asian torrents (and rapidshare as google alerts reports)
    There is nothing we can do about this file.
    please do not download files from outside the Market, or at least check the permissions.
    Our OFFICIAL App doesn't even ask for the Internet permission, how are we going to send private information anywhere?!?
    With that said, the original blog posts come from 2 anti piracy companies, AVAST and Symantec. They even insisted that the file was found on the Android Market. Symantec quotes a copy of the License Verification Structure, LVL, to be something an official App has. Well yeah of course, if they rip our App, you will see LVL in there... I leave it to you to do the math and their integrity about this situation.
    We were never contacted for a comment prior to their blog posts!
    We are sorry to be involved and we did not ask for this publicity and once again have nothing to do with this!

    • Alan

      Why would anyone contact you for a comment, this is a virus, if you dint make it, what possible information can you give on it.

      Unless your admitting you did make it

    • Alan

      Show me where did either of those companies say this was on the Android market..

      Learn to read

      • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

        Alan,

        I remember one of the Avast employees's name was Alan if I don't mistake?

        Anyways, I do not understand why you need to write 14 posts to inform everybody how right you are.

        Avast DID post (I have the original text) in their original post that the app is from the official android market.

        And if you say walk and text, malicious in one sentence, people retweet it, you probably will fail to read the whole article and think this is something coming from the google market. But it is not and we just wanted to make sure that it is stated.

        But continue to post it, if you do not have anything else to do.

        • Alan

          Georgi, there you go again, blaming AVAST and looking to cause more publicity when you claim you dont want publicity, in fact on your website you accused them of making Trojans. Why do they have to apologies to you but you still call them trojan makers on your website.
          All this frustration on something that you claim you have no knowledge of in any way and are the victim of. Yet your the one who contacted Google to remove all the cached post (the same ones you have the text for but cant post a link here because you know you had it removed) and then threatened Anroidpolice to remove their post unless your comments were heard but again you claim you have no knowledge about the threat but you still want to be heard. Your a real piece of work.

          Do you realize all of this just make you look more suspicious.

        • Alan

          By the way, since you requested Google to remove comments about you from their Cache, what about the nasty remarks you have made against AVAST on your site.
          http://incorporateapps.com/wat.php
          Why dont you give them a chance to comment on your website, where you accuse them of making Trojan. Its only fair dont you think, I mean you go every where telling people that you want to set the record straight and be heard, you come over here and then threaten AndroidPolice for the post to be removed or to be heard. But you dont seem to have any problems of accusing other people of wrong doings but not giving them a chance to set the record straight.

    • Tom

      Incorporateapps, I believe you are responsible for putting up the malicious app. Because of this belief I will NEVER use ANYTHING associated with your name on it.

      Why you would choose to harvest people's names, e-mail addresses, etc. even though they did nothing to you is beyond normal comprehension. If I ever find out you have my information there won't be a place far enough away for you to hide.

      As far as I am concerned you are a bunch of conniving S.O.B's that need to be ground up, $hit out, and then flushed!

      • Tom

        And in case anyone here wants to know, I don't condone piracy and I don't use pirated programs.

        However, I also don't like BS companies taking the law into their own hands, and incorporateapps, as far as I am concerned, is a BS company that did just that.

  • Timothy

    wow. talk about a touchy topic =/

  • wpfn

    Behavior warranted or not, I'm a dev and obviously don't condone piracy, but this is overall bad publicity for the android platform - which we DONT want!

    • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

      Agreed 100%, neither do we need this bad publicity.
      But it is obvious that anti piracy software companies will have a vast interest in scaring people into believing that their phones are unsafe in its essence and the Market is also unsafe so they can sell their products when posting such materials, and in effect hurts us.

      I wonder how many people even downloaded that file to even matter to them to put such big blog posts on their websites and this to spread over proportion on Cnet, Yahoo etc.!

      • Alan

        Dude ENOUGH with the anti piracy companies, there is NO SUCH THING. Its Anti Virus company dumb ass.

        Oh Georgi T (thats his real name) you have contradicted yourself yet again. Google the following, and you will find how incrappyapps lies fall apart

        "This particular version of the APK is being spread like a
        worm all over the place and we have no control over it as it is on
        numerous packages found on torrents all over the place"

        then above on this site he says.

        " This file is not to be found on public fileservers (not to our knowledge, email us if you find anything)
        We only find the files on some Asian torrents (and rapidshare as google alerts reports)"

        Its the same guy, I just wish he would butch up and admit he took a STAND against piracy, instead of crying like a bitch against the AV companies. Maybe you should "Text Less" and do more "Walking"..

        • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

          We are a small company, but many people write and it is not one person.
          How exactly are the two sentences different from each other I fail to see.
          We basically said that Google Alert is reporting those files, but they are not to be found on the usual fileservers, because we had them removed. This is all we said. We find the files on torrents.
          Torrents, we have no control over them, can you file a DMCA to a torrent or magnetic links?

        • Alan

          Ok dude so, explain to me this, why are you targeting AndroidPolice/AVAT and the other AV companies for not contacting you.
          You say you have nothing do with the malware, and you dont know anything about it. So if they had contacted you, what were you going to tell them.. NOTHING ????

        • Alan

          "We only find the files on some Asian torrents"

          IS NOT THE SAME AS

          “This particular version of the APK is being spread like a
          worm all over the place and we have no control over it as it is on
          numerous packages found on torrents all over the place”

          Do you see what I mean about you changing stories every time you go to a different forum.

          Dude why dont you just admit it was you, the press is making you out to be a hero for taking a stand against PIRACY.

        • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

          Alan,
          we are not making anything up and not changing any stories.
          We say this: "We have no control over those files, we have no idea where they are, asian forums/torrents no idea" Google alert is sending us some links every day, but we do not bother looking at them.
          Well, those companies, the anti virus/piracy whatever, are insinuating that the file could be found on the android market. It is either direct or between the lines. And like I said, if you put Android, malicious, app in one sentence, then you will probably get people confused into thinking that there is something wrong with Android and you should buy anti virus software.
          I think Google confirmed that our file has nothing to do with this one, but we still have to make it clear.
          No, we do not want to be heroes, we do apps and if someone used our app to do something bad, this is not our issue and we do not want to be involved in this!

        • Alan

          Again more lies Georgi, Google has made no such statements

          "I think Google confirmed that our file has nothing to do with this one, but we still have to make it clear."

          Symantec is the only company that has suggested that your the target of malicious campaign. But after reading your comments here and every where else, I think Symantec has made a mistake and AVAST was right, you are the guy behind all of this, but all of this publicity and noise has made you scared, you initially just wanted to get back at the guys who were pirating you, but it got out of hand and you cant control this now.

          I have no doubt your behind all of this.

      • Tom

        Hey there incorporateapps, or whoever the hell you are, stop with all of the BS. The $hit's getting so deep from you we're all going to have to put on hip boots.

  • Androidess

    Two wrongs don't make either right. Forget that piracy is illegal. Not much different than my pencil being stolen and I choose to shoot the thief as he runs away. Vigilant actions are not tolerated by the legal system as well as it should not be in this situation. Because, where will it stop? Be mad at pirates all you want but keep your phone locked and don't let your phone out of sight for even five minutes or risk some prankster downloading the like on your phone. Sucks when you had no interest in pirating but your phone now has a pirated app due to your negligence. Has happened and thankfully not to me.

  • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

    We also contacted androidpolice to either remove this post or put a note that we have nothing to do with this, still awaiting a reply.
    It is obvious we do not have the resources to go on every forum and twitter account which published this, but we strongly insist that those posts be taken off. It does more damage than it does anything else!

    • Alan

      Every where you go you want people to remove post . (Google Security Blog, Mobilism, AVAT) But then you say you have nothing to do with this virus and know nothing about it. If your really not involved why are you threating people to remove post and even asking Goggle to remove cached pages...

      • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

        Explained above, read it.
        Basically because, prior to this blog post, we were never contacted about this.

        And because we do not want our official apps to be in the same sentence with "fake", "malicious", "pirates".

        People read titles, retweet titles, not the posts and not the comments after the posts!

        • Alan

          So your concerned about people making mistakes with comments, why dont you follow your own advice.

          Look at the comments you made about AVAST, accusing them of making Trojans.
          http://incorporateapps.com/wat.php

          So what happed to your ethics there.

        • Tom

          I'm really truly sorry you don't want “fake”, “malicious”, “pirates” to be in the same sentence as your official apps but as far as I'm concerned that's the only place they belong.

  • Stajdanley

    This is so over-hyped. It was a fake, pirated app from a site that provides pirated content to thieves. It has nothing to do with the Market or Google, so why would Google care. I don't think anyone is going to blame Virgin records when they download a pirated mp3 containing a virus from some shady website, and Virgin surely won't go hunting down the person that uploaded the mp3. The only real downside here is the Apple obsessed media and fanboys will spout this around with misleading and incorrect details that no one will remember in a week anyways... sound familiar?

  • wirbly

    It may not be right - but it sure is sweet, hilarious justice.

  • Andy-riod

    Bit early for April fools is it not.

  • JoshL

    Hahaha! This is hilarious! Karmas a b****, and they got theirs.

  • http://miscpix.com/random jamie

    i approve of this!

  • michael

    I have downloaded pirated software for my phone. I just tested it out to c if i liked it, then i took it off. I really dont like having pirated software on my phone cuz u never know if they will steal my info and all that jazz so i just dont do it. I downloaded the new spb mobile shell last night to test it out illegally cuz im not paying 15.00 for a app i do not like or want. Turns out i hated it so i uninstalled rest my phone.

  • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

    I pose one question to those of you hating the "pirates" What do you do in the case where an app cannot be tested within 15 minutes and does not offer a light app to try some of the features? I do download pirated apps but once I have a chance to test them I pay for them. If they don't suit my needs or don't work as described I delete them. If that is wrong of me then so be it. I'd rather not spend my money on apps that may or may not be functional

  • 87586

    "Today’s story, therefore, gives me added pleasure, because in it, pirates are implicated in one of the most embarrassing ways I can imagine."

    Haha, it is no secret to anyone I know that I am a pirate. I highly doubt anyone cared about this as they went to go pirate a functioning version.

  • sickofallthewhining

    It's amazing how lazy people have become. Be pro-active. Read what permissions an app requires in order to serve your needs. Stop relying on others to do the leg work for you. Use legitimate sources for obtaining your apps. Give something back, support the devs who put a lot of work into these apps. If you run pirated software, then you deserve what ever negative payload it carries... Stunts like these may not be an effective way to combat piracy, but it might help combat stupidity!

  • Alan

    No denying it was the same person, who made the app on the Android Market and who released the virus, check out the grammar and errors on this page hosted by the creators of the app.

    http://incorporateapps.com/wat.php

    Tell me this is not the same guy who put the stupid message in the trojan.

    • Tom

      Good find. It sure seems like the same person.

  • SiliconAddict

    Well I know this much. There are a handful of people who wouldn't pirate apps if it wasn't for Google's asinine 15 minute return policy rule. How the hell am I expected to test a telescope app that remotely controls the device in 15 minutes? So I pirate it. THEN buy it. Don't group everyone into the same damn category. I'm not cheap. But if I'm going to buy something I damn well want to try it out first.

    • Tom

      I can't agree with your logic.

      First, I would NEVER try out a pirated version of any app. If for no other reason than I really don't know what I'll find.

      Second, if I really want an app that bad and I need a longer period of time to try it out, I'll email the person/company that made the app. I'll explain my reasons for needing additional time and ask them if they will give it to me and still issue a refund during that time, if I don't like the app.

      If they reply and say yes then I have a paper trail in case I need to do a charge back on my credit card assuming I delete the app and they refuse the refund.

      If they say no, or don't reply then I know I don't want to deal with a person/company like that.

  • jason

    there's not much excuse for pirating apps. maybe as a test drive, but i expect most developers would give a refund after the 15 minute period if someone asked. i have no data to back that up, but i would. you could also attempt to contact the dev before hand for a test version or something.

    any comparison to music and movies is completely invalid. the major difference being that the apps have always been easily available from the market. it requires extra work to intentionally pirate an app. there are countries that don't have paid app support yet, but i guess you could always do without. we're not talking about food. they're just smartphone apps. it's also hard to believe someone can afford a $200+ phone + $15+ month in extra data fees, but not have a few bucks to spare for an app.

    i can't be positive, but since mar 30th 17:00 PDT when it appears this story first broke (at least according to articles on google news), i've had 18 purchases of my app (about 1 an hour). normally, it's about 1 a day. all but 1 of them before mar 31st 8:30 PDT.

    it would be interesting to know if any other developers observed similar spikes. no proof, but i guess they could have been former pirates.

  • Nejai

    some application cannot be found in the Market (for some of us) maybe because the carrier of because cant´get acces to paid applications. If the official site does not accept paypal payments or something easy.. well you get out of options..

  • Rob

    Pathetic and very childish of these so-called trolls.

    AndroidPolice really shouldn't be glorifying it in such a way. Reporting on it is one thing, but this article is saying that what they did is acceptable.

  • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

    Posted on Mobilism by the creators of the real app

    "But it is flattering that you want to crack something we did, which means we gave something to the world - you simply stole it.
    We take that as a big compliment, thank you!"

    P.S. Your app may be able to be tested in 15 minutes as far as features but not all issues with the app would present themselves within 15 minutes. No one wants to pay for broken apps. Sorry to burst your bubble

    • JauntyJester

      HAHAH
      "P.S. Your app may be able to be tested in 15 minutes"
      This looks like it was posted by the creator of the app, get a grammar checker buddy. BUSTED!!!!!!!!

      • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

        Sorry I'm not the creator of the app... and my post was in response to their post in mobilism and here is your link moron.
        http://forum.mobilism.org/viewtopic.php?f=434&t=160222

        • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

          In fact I was a "victim" of the hacked app when it first came out on mobilism well over a month ago. I am also one of the first people to have reported the it as malware getting it removed from mobilism

        • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

          Oh yeah and lets not forget my actual post in reply to the real devs of the real app
          http://forum.mobilism.org/viewtopic.php?p=699666#699666

        • JauntyJester

          Sorry bro, dint mean to rub you the wrong way, I figured I was the only guy here who was on that thread from Mobilism, a real victim, after their calls for removing the apps was ignored.
          You know I had 45 people in my contact list, and I have a pay as you go account. This guy owe me money for the spam he sent out using my phone.

    • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

      No worries... I was having a bad day and shouldn't have jumped all over you so hard. Pirates gotta stick together lmao

  • Androidess

    I applaud you squiddy and xandroidaddix

    • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

      Why thank you =]

  • JauntyJester

    Posted on Mobilism about the creators of the real app

    ===========================
    http://forum.mobilism.org/viewtopic.php?p=700428

    Wow, glad I went with my instinct on this one! Iffy version and WAY too large of a file size. ...not to mention a creepy message. If they really wanted to encourage me to buy their software, why do a stunt like this?! Thanks for destroying your credentials! Most of the time I download to test the software before purchasing it, but that isn't going to occur this time. Staying away from this company 100%!

    ==============================

    What a dick move dude, but really brilliant media stunt.

  • Screwthisdev

    Guess I'll approve of pirates then, since I'll never approve of this developer's combative actions. Arrrgh!

    • JauntyJester

      It gets worst, now hes blaming the security companies on his site for doing their job. Check out what he said today on

      http://www.incorporateapps.com/wat.php

      ---------------------------------------
      Edit 31.03.2010: We now understand that another anti virus company, Symantec is also taking on this and posting it as a quote 'Android threat', once again without bothering to contact us for a comment... We wonder why only anti virus companies have interest in writing blogs about pirated apps they find on illegal sources and are trying to spread fear among the normal 'android market' customers, who will probably fail to read the whole information and sometimes fail to see that the file is not to be found on the market, but on some torrents, when it is obvious that anyone, anywhere can put anything on the Internet. We leave the answers to you.
      --------------------------------------

      Dumb fuck, thats their job to lookout for threats.

      • Alan

        Check out what he changed it today but still kept the date to 31..

        --------------------------------------

        Edit 31.03.2010: We now understand that another anti virus company, Symantec is also taking on this and posting it as a quote 'Android threat', once again without bothering to contact us for a comment... We wonder why only anti virus companies have interest in writing blogs about pirated apps they find on illegal sources and are trying to spread fear among the normal 'android market' customers, who will probably fail to read the whole information and sometimes fail to see that the file is not to be found on the market, but on some torrents, when it is obvious that anyone, anywhere can put anything on the Internet. Our point is that, if this is really a minor threat, like Symantec is reporting, why is this such a big news and needs a special blog post on their site? We leave the answers to you.
        Disclaimer: If anybody wants to use materials from this page, contact us first and ask for permission!

        ------------------------------------

  • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

    As for the team here at AndroidPolice. I don't like you guys any less for your hatred of piracy. I feel that you guys have your reasoning just as the pirates have theirs. You guys are still the best Android news site on the web and a difference of opinion won't change that.

    • Dude

      Agree with you there Addict, you guys (AP) do have one amazing site.

      • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

        Thanks, you two. Appreciate it - makes the daily hard work worth it when you hear feedback like yours.

        • http://www.Twitter.com/xandroidaddictx xAndroidAddictx

          No problem Art... We may not see eye-to-eye on all things but you guys are still awesome!!!

  • Dude

    Was reading the rebuttal by the original creators of Walk and Text..
    "This could very well be seen from the signature of the file (reported on some other forum) and from the code structure. Anyone, anywhere, can get a hold of our APK and rip it and put what they want in it."
    Any developer how knows how to put a hello world program together knows how to manipulate/create certs. Thats not really a good defense there.

  • http://www.singsomethingsoft.wordpress.com MarissaJean

    I don't think that sending a text out to all their contacts would do much. Think about it; if they have a data plan and can buy the apps to begin with, chances are they have unlimited texting too. Just sayin.

    Don't pirate and you won't get crap like this... it's just like getting a virus from a bad file. Don't take the risk if you don't want the consequence.

  • Tom

    Even though I dislike piracy with a passion I don't agree with you that the it was okay for the makers of this app to do what they did.

    Would you care to comment on why anyone not involved with the downloading of the pirated app should have their information compromised by incorporateapps? They didn't have a damned thing to do with the freaking app but now incorporateapps can do what ever the hell they want with their info.

    I would appreciate a response.

  • Todd

    Personally, I think the fake app should have just made the user think the app was sending out all those text messages. And it shouldn't be sending out any personal information anywhere. Except maybe an e-mail message to Google, "I downloaded warez!" And pretend to make long distance or 1-900 phone calls. "Hi, this is Suzie. Press 3 to complete this call." Beep. "Thank you." Etc.

  • http://www.linuxzone.se JasoX

    If you got busted by using this fake app, you deserved it!!! No excuses, no nothing.

    The app costs a measly buck, how cheap are you if pirate a app which costs $1?

    • Tom

      @ JasoX:

      I agree with you but what about the people who didn't use the fake app? They're innocent but the BS company incorporateapps now has their information.

      I've noticed that incorporateapps has stopped replying here. Too much heat for them??

  • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

    Tom and Alan,

    Could you please stop insinuating that our app has anything to do with this?

    @Tom
    "I agree with you but what about the people who didn’t use the fake app? They’re innocent but the BS company incorporateapps now has their information."

    We are NOT collecting any personal information and never were. Somebody planted that url in the fake app, wouldn't it be a little too obvious to put a direct link to a non-anonymous domain in a fake app like that?

    Are you trying to insinuate that our app on the MARKET is collecting personal information?
    It doesn't even ask for the internet permission, how exactly are we going to collect personal information over "THE INTERNET" ? Should we ask the user to mail it via air mail?
    And google will leave it unnoticed for so long?

    "I’ve noticed that incorporateapps has stopped replying here. Too much heat for them??"

    No, too much real work to do to reply to somebody who is on a personal vendetta and has about 20 replies in this thread alone.

    It would be great if AndroidPolice goes the Avast way and reveals the IPs of their users.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      "It would be great if AndroidPolice goes the Avast way and reveals the IPs of their users."

      Are you fucking insane?

      • http://www.incorporateapps.com incorporateapps

        That comment was obviously a little sarcasm in regards to Avast and the way they revealed user information, but it is comforting to know that you feel the same way like us about revealing the personal information of your commenters. I hope you will agree that this is illegal.
        I wonder why nobody bothered to ask Avast how they can so easily reveal IP addresses of their users, without even a disclaimer on their page that they save them once you comment on their blog.

        • Tom

          Hey there incorporateapps:

          I believe you to be a lying piece of crap. I no more believe you were being sarcastic about wanting our IP addresses than you being truthful about your phony app.

  • GGam

    I agree with commenters that pirating is not good, especially when the apps are dirt cheap, BUT most of you don't seem to realize that A LOT OF PEOPLE in quite a few countries (think everything to the East of Czech Republic, including Ukraine and Belorussia) SIMPLY CAN NOT BUY APPS!

    We can download the free ones, but we can't pay for anything because Google ties the payment to the operator.

    How retarded is that?

    I can pay with my Credit Card, Google Checkout account, Paypal or even Wire transfer for crying out loud, and yet the Web marketplace says the app is not available for my phone (the Market app on my phone doesn't even find the apps that are not available for me!).

    I would've spent $50+ by now on apps, yet I'm forced to find free alternatives and use torrents and third party sites to get the ones I really need (and there's not that many of them, plus even if I install one, I can't update it or it can be buggy - that's not worth the $1-5 I save).

    This fake app just adds insult to injury and I'd be very pissed if it did what it does to me.

    Does Google really need to share with the operator(s)? I imported my phone from the US, unlocked, as did my friends and a dozen people I know - it's much cheaper this way, the EU can go **** itself with their taxes. So why not allow to pay directly?

    I really hope they will allow to pay online and download the apps using their Website to my computer or even straight to my phone...

  • Tom

    "We are NOT collecting any personal information and never were. Somebody planted that url in the fake app, wouldn’t it be a little too obvious to put a direct link to a non-anonymous domain in a fake app like that?"

    Contrary to what you say, I personally believe you did plant the URL in the fake app and then uploaded it. The fact that it is so obvious could be giving you the excuse you are looking for.

    "Are you trying to insinuate that our app on the MARKET is collecting personal information?

    No. I don't know what your "real" app, on the Market, is doing but that doesn't mean you didn't make and plant the pirated version.

    "Are you trying to insinuate that our app on the MARKET is collecting personal information?"

    I am NOT insinuating anything. I am saying what I believe. Are you insinuating I don't have the right to say how I feel?

    "No, too much real work to do to reply to somebody who is on a personal vendetta and has about 20 replies in this thread alone."

    That shit won't fly! I am not on any personal vendetta. Why would you think so? Is it because I said I will never use anything associated with you? I guess you feel I'm on a personal vendetta against whatever company that makes something I won't buy. Talk about paranoia, you do fit the definition of it.

    "It would be great if AndroidPolice goes the Avast way and reveals the IPs of their users."

    Why? Do you want to try to sue me for saying what I believe? You are fucking nuts!

    My bottom line is that if you are truly innocent of having anything to do with the making and uploading of the phony app, I hope you are completely exonerated. I will even come back here and apologize. If, however, you did have anything to do with the phony app I hope it ruins you for the rest of your life!

  • Morgan Stanley

    Stop bullsh1t with

    LBE privacy guard

    &

    DroidWall

    &

    AdAway

    !!!!!!!!!!!

    Report mobilism to FBI / ICE

    selling cracked apps is extremely gay

    Requiring donation to use cracking forum is fukced up

    I license apps outside the market because it's safer for my RL data and work data. I own a dozen apps

    VERY worth it is: Tasker, SVOX, Llama, app monster, rom manager

    • http://www.gplus.to/KraigWebb xAndroydAddyctx

      Mobilism doesn't sell cracked apps or require donations for use. It is completely free and the purpose behind it is to allow people to test apps before buying. Some of the people use it just to get apps but there are a lot of us that use it for testing purposes and do support the devs of the apps once we get longer than 15 minutes to try their app

      • http://no-www.org captain obvious

        http://forum.mobilism.org/viewtopic.php?p=818975#818975

        "Welcome to our community. Mobilism is a huge user-powered database of Android (and other mobile OSs) apps, games, movies and books. Our android users have over 21 000 apps, 8 000 games, 7 000 movies, and 38 000 books available to them."

        That does not sound oriented to test before buying. That seems targeted to skip paying and have unlimited access to every [cracked] app we could lay hands on

        "Mobilism does not host files on its servers, we use filehosts that our users upload files to."

        Mobilism only uses filehosts which PAY the uploader. So again the [alleged] cracker is profiting from a cracked app.

        "Mobilism has been around since 2006, "

        begging for FBI attention

        "How to get premium...
        1. Click on the PayPal button in the upper right hand corner of this page
        2. Enter the amount you want to donate ($20 is the minimum for a year, $25 will include VIP status/access on the forum)"

        Willing to pay $20/year for speedy access to cracked apps but not willing to pay a dime to developers?

        yeah, no hypocrisy here!

  • http://no-www.org captain obvious

    mobilism sells cracked apps by charging a fee to access cracked apps via an android app

    this is the very area that attracts FBI scrutiny

    mobilism is also obviously NOT free: their site runs ads, the very malware the android is guilty of peddling. adware claiming to be freeware. recycled cracks site claiming mandatory donation for access to cracked software is not a cost

    riiiight

    just for testing purposes: shareware and trialware

    cracking itself is NOT the problem. I prefer my licensensed software not phone home or waste my resources with DRM

    selling other's work IS the problem

    mobilism does not seem to acutally house crackers. they are as gay as p2p [re]releasing other crackers binaries

    forsooth threefold!

    • xyzzy

      I know this is old, but I have to reply:

      @Captain Obvious "mobilism sells cracked apps by charging a fee to access cracked apps via an android app"

      Actually, Mobilism is a free bulletin board community that individual members use to share links to apps publicly so anyone can download them. The donations are used to cover the site's costs and to pay for community paid accounts at the major filesharing hosts... Donating logically lets the user access the community's paid account for a year, and gives them "wrz bucks" to reward others with for fulfilling requests.

      From what I've seen, msot regulars genuinely do use the files for free trials and/or security purposes; they buy legal copies and spread the word if it's worthwhile. Some also use it to obtain high-priced apps they need that lack a free equivalent.

      (FWIW as a writer, I feel that we coders/writers should charge for our work when we're professional quality, and hone our skills through free projects until then, as was the norm until recently. I judge piracy largely by whether I'd charge for work of equivalent caliber that I've done.)

  • http://no-www.org captain obvious

    CRACK down on malware and privacy rape of android apps:

    PDroid

    MY information is MINE

    privacy is NOT a commodity

  • Captain Phillip Reginald Doorchester

    You'll never stop us as long as the internet still has a pulse. Enjoy your small victories, for they mean nothing in the grande scheme of things. Much like the war on drugs, this is a war that cannot ever be won. We have been here since the dawn of time, we will be here til the end. :)

    xoxo

    - Pirates

  • xoxo

    (Outdated, but oh well...)
    Amm...private...khhhhhm..torrent sites...