Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

Google removed 700000 bad apps from the Play Store a year ago

Google Play Downloads Hit Record High in Q4 Leads App Store by 145 Percent App Annie German mobile app market reaches EUR 1.5 bln in revenue in 2017
| 01 February, 2018, 01:00

In response to the malware development, Google deployed "teams of engineers, policy experts, product managers, and operations professionals who constantly monitor the store and incorporate feedback from the user community to protect people from misleading, inappropriate, or harmful apps".

Google was able to do that through machine learning created to weed out apps with inappropriate content, malware and copycats, Andrew Ahn, the Google Play product manager, said in the blog post.

Google's new machine learning techniques enabled it to remove 99 percent of apps with abusive content before anyone had installed them.

Ahn also suggests the company identified even more malicious apps. Google used its AI-powered engine to help "detect abusive app content and behaviors-such as impersonation, inappropriate content, or malware" which then helped the human reviewers detect problematic apps. Primarily the company has taken down copycat apps, which were impersonating as famous apps and misleading the users.

Google announced past year in July that the company is using artificial intelligence to help identify malicious apps entering the Play Store.


Google's policy, however, forbids any "inappropriate content" that could include pornographic content, illegal activities of any kind, and extreme violence that could encourage hate or intolerance.

"Tens of thousands of apps with inappropriate content were taken down a year ago as a result of such improved detection methods", said Google. These apps would commit SMS fraud, act as trojans, and attempt to phish user data. Google did say that due to the launch of Google Play Protect in 2017, the PHA install rate dropped 50pc year-on-year. Earlier this month, the company removed 60 games from the Play Store - some of them meant for children - that were found to display pornographic ads. According to Google, that's just a drop in the bucket compared to the 700,000 it booted from the Play Store in 2017.

Good on Google for working to keep bad and malicious apps. In order to give a full compatibility with low power consuming apps, Google has also laucnhed several go Apps. Many of them showed pornographic images. It essentially scans all the apps downloaded on Play Store. App developers with bad intent have previously offered fake apps in the form of WhatsApp as well.

Potentially Harmful Applications:Apps that can harm your device, including phishing and fraudulent apps. The only way to resolve this issue without compromising the openness of the platform would be to present warning screens on the Chrome browser while downloading unknown APKs (Android app installers).

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