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What is mod APK and how can you prevent it
4 mins

What is mod APK and how can you prevent it

Table of Contents:

    Everything from buying meals to listening to music to playing games to staying in touch with friends and family has been altered by mobile applications.

    Because of the growing popularity of mobile applications, a new kind of app has emerged: Mod. Modified APKs are very common in the android world. It’s easier for hackers to get through anti-virus and other security measures by using modified software.

    In this article, we’ll go into detail about what a modded APK is, the legality behind the usage of these modded APKs, and how to prevent the original APK from being modded. 

    What is mod APK or modded APK?

    Mod APKs are reworked copies of the original mobile apps that were distributed with them. Mod APKs are made to provide users access to new or improved features that aren’t present in the original version of the app.

    The Android operating system’s package file format is called APK, and it is used to distribute and install mobile applications and middleware in that format.

    It’s not uncommon for games on smartphones to need you to pay a fee in order to access certain features. It’s at this point when mods come into play. All of the game’s premium features will be available for free in the modified version. Mod APKs have grown in popularity recently for this same reason.

    The majority of Android applications that have been modified are available in the Google Play Store. As a result, downloading apps from sources other than the Google Play Store is never a good idea. Your mobile device may have alerted you to the dangers of downloading an app from a source you don’t know. That’s because of the security concerns that these apps pose.

    Popular games like Temple Run 2 and Candy Crush Saga were targeted by these mod APKs in 2012 and 2013. Using baits resembling gaming cheats, these customized applications infected a large number of devices. In addition, these applications acquired personal information from all of the infected devices by aggressively pushing advertisements.


    What does a mod APK mean for the original APK developer?

    Object code and source code are not distinct under the IP regime. Source and object code may both be secured with IP techniques for computer code. Importantly, IP distinguishes between the written code and its purpose or impact.

    Copyright protection may be available for an app’s written code but not for its functionality under various kinds of intellectual property protection. It is possible that even if the new code is protected, the owner of the old code must provide authorization for the rewrite or change of the code in order to continue performing the same function.

    Products or methods that have a technological impact are protected by patents, which are granted to inventors.

    For example, software code alone is not patentable in a mobile app until it causes anything beyond the code itself and as long as the elements that implement the program are novel or innovative in comparison to what was known at the time of the invention. To be protected, just what is stated in a patent and its equivalents can be protected; abstract notions (such as software that scans documents) cannot be protected. For a maximum of 20 years from the date of filing, you are protected.

    When exploiting past work, the first step is to verify if it is protected by intellectual property (IP) or is free to be used without restrictions. The usage of works that are in the public domain is unrestricted.

    Intellectual property rights are violated by enabling others to download a modified version of an APK. There must be an agreement in place between the copyright holder and those who wish to use a work covered by intellectual property (IP) rights (exceptions to the right). IP-protected works can be included in a mobile app with the right holder’s permission.

    Illegal modded APKs can cause:

    Lost revenue: Revenue that has been lost since users are no longer paying for the original version

    Customer security is jeopardized: There is a large number of harmful mod APKs available, and customers frequently face virus attacks or data breaches as a result. This will eventually harm the reputation of the original APK.

    How to prevent your APK from being modified

    Some ways to keep yourself safe include:

    Maintain control over your code

    All the faults and weaknesses in an app’s design and code are exploited by mobile malware as its sole method of distribution. Before the vulnerability is exploited, cybercriminals get their hands on a public copy of the target program and begin reversing engineering it.

    Rogue versions of popular applications, which include dangerous code, are distributed through third-party app stores in an attempt to trick unwary users into installing them and subsequently compromising all of their personal information. Businesses should thus seek out tools and approaches that aid their developers in identifying security flaws and protecting their apps from unauthorized activity or manipulation.

    Protect your data using encryption

    As the last step in protecting your data, you can use encryption to do so. While saving user data in a local database, we must use as much encryption as feasible. With the use of algorithm-based keys, plaintext may be converted to ciphertext, which is unintelligible. A hacker must first obtain the decryption key before he or she can access your private information.

    Issuing A Takedown Notice by DMCA

    Takedown notices issued by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) are another approach to keep the original app from being modified. To enable content owners quickly and effectively get their stolen work removed from digital means, the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) was passed by the United States Congress as copyright legislation. Search engines, web hosting companies, and Internet service providers (ISPs) are all examples of where this might be found.

    Installing an Anti-Piracy Software

    Mod APKs include additional features like unlocked premium features, no in-app ads, and so on. As a distributor, releasing an altered APK on the internet and allowing other people to download it is illegal. Your intellectual property rights are breached when your APK is decompiled and supplied with a changed version.

    If consumers no longer pay for the in-app purchase because of the modded APK, you are losing income to the modded APK. Anti-piracy solutions like Red Points can help you recoup some of the money you’ve lost because of someone decompiling and reverse engineering your APK, even if you can’t prevent it.

    An anti-piracy software solution such as Red Points can go a long way toward preventing your original app from being altered once it is installed. The following is Red Points’ strategy to mod APK:

    • Removing the search engine results from the list
    • It’s possible to report social media postings.
    • Remove comments from discussion forums.
    • Report telegram messages
    • Take down any files that have been shared on the cyberlocker.

    What’s Next

    With each passing year, mobile platform malware continues to advance — gaining more complex and never-before-seen capabilities — and the discovery of such malware on the Google Play Store does not come as a complete surprise anymore.

    Apps that have been modified or that have been maliciously programmed go to great lengths to appear as authentic as possible; nonetheless, it is always recommended that you verify before installing any unfamiliar software, whether it is from the Google Play Store or from another source. In order to do so, it is a good idea to look at evaluations from other users as well as the developer’s background information.


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