Application Security

1/31/2018
11:53 AM
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700,000 Bad Apps Deleted from Google Play in 2017

Google rejected 99% of apps with abusive content before anyone could install them, according to a 2017 security recap.

Google took down 700,000 apps from Google Play in 2017 because they violated the store's policies. This marks a 70% increase from the amount of apps removed in 2016, reports Google Play product manager Andrew Ahn in a blog post on 2017 security measures.

Ahn says 99% of malicious apps were identified and rejected before anyone could install them. Improvements in detection models helped find apps containing malware or inappropriate content, as well as threat actors and abusive developer networks. Google Play took down 100,000 bad developers in 2017 and made it difficult for them to create new accounts.

Examples of bad apps that were removed include copycats, which try to deceive users by disguising as famous apps. More apps were flagged for content, including pornography, extreme violence, hate, and illegal activities. Potentially harmful applications, which had a 50% lower install rate in 2017, are designed to phish users' data, act as Trojans, or conduct SMS fraud.

Read more details here.

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GonzSTL
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GonzSTL,
User Rank: Ninja
2/2/2018 | 1:02:55 PM
Re: Apples to Androids
Unrelated but analogous was IBM's use of an open architecture when it built the IBM PC. Sure, it opened up the PC marketplace for software, add-in boards, etc., but it also killed their PC business as cheap clones flooded the market. So where it is a good idea to encourage large numbers, those large numbers have a way of biting back at the idea.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
2/2/2018 | 5:07:17 AM
Re: Apples to Androids
@Brian: So it's a numbers game. You get the growth, but at a huge cost to security -- but with the business expectation that the gains will outweigh the losses (particularly because the market is so small).

Which is all well and good until you consider that, I suspect, this and other instances of allowing poor and easily exploitable security practices may contribute to an ultimate tyranny of small decisions.
BrianN060
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BrianN060,
User Rank: Ninja
2/1/2018 | 3:48:49 PM
Re: Apples to Androids
@JoeS: Yes, Apple is much better at vetting than Google, so is Microsoft.  As pointed out on another site about same story yesterday: Google wanted massive numbers of apps, largely as a marketing point.  Best way to do that is an open-door policy.  That got them their market share - at a price. 
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
2/1/2018 | 12:04:36 PM
Apples to Androids
This is a headline you just don't see when it comes to Apple's App Store. As has been pointed out in the Tweetsphere, this means that Google allowed 700,000 crappy, malicious apps into its poorly guarded app store.
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