Two weeks ago, Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney confirmed that the Android version of Fortnite, largely seen as the most popular game in the world, would not be available through the Google Play Store. Instead, fans would have to install it from the web. The announcement drew heaps of attention—not least of which came from peddlers of malware.
Fortnite only became broadly available on Android this week. But on August 3, the day of Sweeney’s announcement, WIRED quickly discovered seven sites advertising themselves as Android Fortnite downloads. Analysis from mobile security company Lookout found that each of those sites distributed malware to anyone who fell for the scam.
The finding serves as a caution to Fortnite fans only to download from the official Epic Games site. More importantly, it’s a reminder of the real risks that come with operating outside of the Google Play Store—risks that could end up extending well beyond the battle bus.