Last Jan. 17, Google declared that silence speaks louder than words with the way it has been working to ensure that Android devices remain secure, but the company violated that mantra in the very same announcement by detailing how it endeavors to guarantee that Google Play Store and the apps sold therein are free of any form of malware.

You cannot really fault Google for patting itself on the back for its vigilance especially when you learn that the company was able to detect 25,000 malwares that, if allowed, would have thoroughly compromised Android devices and their users' data.

Google Verify Apps Solution

One of the key mechanisms that Google uses to weed out malwares such as Gooligans and Ghost Push Trojan is the Verify apps tool. This checks whether there are malwares or harmful apps installed in an Android handset before and after it is published in the Play Store. You might have encountered it at work if you have been warned about an app or a suggestion that it should be uninstalled.

Addressing Security For Installed Apps

It is worth noting that Android is an open platform, which makes Google's security efforts critical. Some compromised apps could, therefore, escape scrutiny or install outside of the Play Store. Also there are instances when Android devices no longer check with the Verify apps solution. These are what Google calls as Dead or Insecure devices.

In these conditions, the Android Security team conducts a statistical analysis to determine the harm that devices are exposed to and take down apps based on the number of installations and their retention rates.

"Even after you've installed an app, built-in software regularly scans your device to ensure that app is behaving," Google said. "If the app steps out of line, you'll be notified and Google Play can automatically block it, lickety-split."

Google On Transparency

According to Google, the Verify apps mechanism and the DOI scorer, along with other unidentified Android anti-malware initiatives demonstrates a multi-layered approach that allows its security team to keep the Play Store and the Android ecosystem safe and stable.

Google has also indicated that the public would probably get to know more about its continuing security processes in a drive to increase transparency. This goal is sensible if only for the fact that Android users will know that their devices are safe to use straight out of the box and that they can download just about any app in the Play Store, confident that it will not harm their device or compromise personal data.

ⓒ 2021 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.