Menu
Google amps up fight against malicious apps with enhanced Android security

Google amps up fight against malicious apps with enhanced Android security

A small number of people could see warnings with the new system, Google said

Google is boosting Android security safeguards to better detect potentially harmful apps throughout their life cycle.

The security enhancement, announced Thursday, is designed to continually check Android devices to detect vulnerabilities in apps that could be introduced at any time. Previously, malicious apps downloaded outside of Google Play could only be flagged at the time of installation.

Such apps, if not detected, could expose personal information, incur unwanted usage charges, or damage the Android device.

The enhancement is built on Android's app scanning system, which was rolled out two years ago to analyze apps for malware, spyware and Trojans.

"We're adding to that service layer, further fortifying your Android phone or tablet," the company said.

The update is available on devices running Android 2.3 or later, and began rolling out Thursday. Users do not have to take action to receive the update.

Because potentially harmful applications are rare, most people will not see any warnings or other indications that they have the additional layer of protection, Google said. The Verify Apps service has been used more than 4 billion times in the last year to check apps at the time of installation. In that time, only 0.18 percent of installations received a warning that the app was potentially harmful, Google said.

But, "we do expect a small number of people to see warnings as a result of this new capability," the company said. "Even though the risk is minuscule, we're committed to making sure that the best available security protections are available to all Android users," Google said.

Android has other safeguards built into its platform, such as application sandboxing, which is designed to reduce harmful apps' ability to damage devices.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Subscribe here for up-to-date channel news

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesmobile securitysmartphonesMobile OSessocial networkingmobileinternetmobile applicationsAndroid OSconsumer electronicsGooglesecurity

Featured

Slideshows

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards

Revealed at a glitzy bash in Sydney at the Ivy Penthouse, the first StorageCraft Partner Awards locally saw the vendor honour its top-performing partners with ASI Solutions, SMBiT Pro, Webroot, ACA Pacific and Soft Solutions New Zealand taking home the top awards. Photos by Maria Stefina.

StorageCraft celebrates high achievers at its inaugural A/NZ Partner Awards
Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip

Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip

​Synnex and Lenovo hosted 18 resellers for an action-packed weekend adventure in RotoVegas, taking in white water rafting on the Kaituna River, as well as quad biking and dinner at Stratosfare​, overlooking Lake Rotorua at the top of Mount Ngongotaha​. Photos by Synnex.

Kiwi resellers make a splash on Synnex and Lenovo RotoVegas road trip
Show Comments