Title: Google Play Protect Introduces Real-Time Scanning to Block Potentially Harmful Apps
Google Play Protect, the built-in security engine for Android, has recently launched a new feature that offers real-time analysis of an app’s code to prevent potentially harmful apps from being installed. This move aims to catch malicious or fake sideloaded apps that are downloaded from outside the Google Play store.
The Play Protect feature recommends a real-time app scan for any new app that has never been scanned before. The code analysis extracts crucial signals from the app and sends them to the Play Protect backend infrastructure for evaluation.
The introduction of enhanced scanning comes as a countermeasure against predatory loan apps that have been linked to user harassment. In the past year, Google has taken down more than 3,500 predatory loan apps. However, attackers have still managed to find ways to target victims, necessitating further security measures.
Initially launched in India, the Play Protect update is set to expand internationally. In tests, Play Protect successfully blocked the majority of malicious apps. However, some recently created predatory loan apps were able to bypass the scanning process and install on devices.
While the real-time scanning capabilities of Play Protect are not perfect, they have still proven effective in blocking the installation of spyware and stalkerware apps. Additionally, the feature has been successful in eliminating fake versions of popular apps.
Google spokesperson Scott Westover emphasized that the real-time scanning capabilities of Play Protect will continue to evolve and improve over time. This ensures that users will benefit from increasingly robust protection against harmful apps.
It is important for users to remain cautious when sideloading Android apps, as this practice carries inherent risks. By leveraging the real-time scanning feature offered by Play Protect, users can significantly enhance their defense against potential threats.
With the new addition of real-time code analysis, Google Play Protect is working relentlessly to keep user devices secure and protect them from the threat of harmful apps.
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