Play Store App May Get Built-in Malware Scanner
Article by George Norman
On 15 Oct 2012
Rumor on the web has it that with the version after Android 4.1, Google may build a malware scanner into the Play Store app.

Security experts often report that the number of malicious apps that target Android-powered devices is growing fast and Google should take measures to ensure users remain protected. If rumors are to be believed, Google will address such concerns by building a malware scanner into the Play Store app. This malware scanner will check all apps for harmful behavior and is reportedly going to be introduced with Android 4.2, or whatever new version will come after Android 4.1 codename Jelly Bean.


This is not the first time that Google, unlike what some experts may say, shows it’s taking security seriously. I remind you that earlier this year Google introduced Bouncer, a service that automatically scans the Play Store (formerly Android Market) and looks for potentially malicious software. While Bouncer runs, new applications, existing applications, and developer accounts are analyzed for signs of wrongdoing.

“Once an application is uploaded, the service immediately starts analyzing it for known malware, spyware and Trojans,” explained Hiroshi Lockheimer, VP of Android engineering. “It also looks for behaviors that indicate an application might be misbehaving, and compares it against previously analyzed apps to detect possible red flags. We actually run every application on Google’s cloud infrastructure and simulate how it will run on an Android device to look for hidden, malicious behavior. We also analyze new developer accounts to help prevent malicious and repeat-offending developers from coming back.”

So the conclusion is that Google is taking Android security seriously and is keen on keeping Android users safe and secure. It proved this with the Google Bouncer service and, if the rumors prove to be true, it will once again prove it by building malware-scanning capabilities into the Google Play app.

Tags: Google, Security, Android, Google Play, Play Store, Android Market, Bouncer
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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