The iconic game Super Mario Run is coming to Android devices in March 2017 although a few versions of the platform game seem to be springing up early.
Users have reportedly taken to searching online for an APK file for the game.
For those who don’t know, APK files are the smartphone version of .exe files on Windows and are used to enable smartphone owners ot install apps and games on their Android devices without having to go through the Google Play Store – normally before the app or game is officially released.
However, be warned – Super Mario Run does not yet exist for Android and users can be putting themselves at risk by downloading apps from unofficial third party app stores.
Nintendo has stressed that almost all of the Super Mario Run APK files are fake as they have not officially pushed-out the game via the Google Play Store.
Disreputable websites offering the game are probably tricking users into downloading malware in a similar manner to what occurred with Pokémon Go when that was first released.
Security researchers have now claim that the most popular versions of Super Mario Run are actually the infamous Marcher Trojan in disguise which first appeared back in 2013 and tricks users into entering credit or debit card details.
Researchers have previously called Marcher “the most prevalent threat to the Android devices”.
The Vice President of Research for app security company Axran, Aaron Lint has previously said: “As Nintendo’s second foray into mobile gaming with one of their lead franchises, Super Mario Run is immediately going to be a prime target for attackers trying to exploit its code – especially with the number of users which will be downloading this game.
“Just as with the previous smash hit Pokémon Go, we anticipate the appearance of corrupted fake apps used to spread malware.”
As always, the only way to ensure that you download safe apps is to use the Google Play Store or trusted websites.