"[app name] appears to be infected. Immediate uninstallation is advised" pop-up on Huawei devices



  • I just got a pop-up on my phone, Huawei P30 lite running Emui 10.

    It was approximately:

    Asana appears to be infected. Immediate uninstallation is advised.

    I do not use Asana currently so uninstalled to be safe, but it made me wonder:

    1. Is there actually an infection?
    2. Where does the message come from, I have never seen one like it
    3. Where would I go to confirm the official message, I just went to the Asana main page and didn't notice anything unusual, but suppose these things may be placed in a corner somewhere


  • This is an alert pop-up from Avast Antivirus that is integrated on some Huawei/EMUI devices.

    Regarding the actual infection, it's hard to say, but based on online reports about the pop-up, looks like most of them were false positive:

    • https://community.appinventor.mit.edu/t/why-my-compiled-app-with-trojan-app-has-virus/1607 (and its linked discussions)
    • https://piunikaweb.com/2022/01/22/halifax-bank-app-security-threat-pop-up-issue-on-android-acknowledged/ (22 Jan 2022)
    • https://community.monzo.com/t/monzo-app-appears-to-be-infected/128192 (21 Jan 2022)
    • Reddit:
      • https://www.reddit.com/r/Huawei/comments/s9w9e2/security_threat_app_appears_to_be_infected/ (22 Jan 2022)
      • https://www.reddit.com/r/Huawei/comments/sa192z/no_your_phone_does_not_have_an_infected_app_it_is/ (22 Jan 2022)

    Also on https://www.reddit.com/r/Huawei/comments/le1tox/comment/grl1br1/?utm_source=reddit&utm_medium=web2x&context=3 , there was a suggestion to update the virus database.

    Open the "Optimizer" app, that should have shipped by default with any modern Huawei smartphone. Tap the gear icon in the top right corner to open the settings dialog.

    The last option in that list is called "Online Virus Scan". If the last update was many days ago, you can manually update by tapping "Online Virus Scan" and selecting "WLAN only".

    As to how to confirm the official message, unfortunately, Avast does not seem to provide any more detail other than only letting the user choose to ignore/uninstall the app.

    • One way is to contact them by any means, like public forums (preferable, so other users can give more input), or even call their customer support directly.

    • Another way is to cross-scan the app with multiple scanners (e.g. https://www.virustotal.com/gui/ ). One can retrieve the APK file by downloading it from reliable alternative sources (e.g. https://www.apkmirror.com/ ), then uploading it there.

      https://www.virustotal.com/gui/file/bfd6b77951789991d36a4bdd62d78a464647851642721ab7816b6eb91ed1dbbc/detection is the scan result for https://www.apkmirror.com/apk/asana/asana/asana-6-84-3-release/ (20 Jan 2022).


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