Published: January 31, 2018 2:41 pm
Google removed more than 7,00,000 apps that violated the Google Play policies and 1,00,000 bad developers from the Play Store in 2017. According to the company, this was 70 per cent more than the apps taken down in 2016. Google used machine learning to detect abuse such as impersonation and inappropriate content or malware.
“Not only did we remove more bad apps, we were able to identify and action against them earlier. In fact, 99% of apps with abusive contents were identified and rejected before anyone could install them,” Andrew Ahn, Product Manager, Google Play wrote in a blog post.
Copycats or apps impersonating famous apps is one of the most common violations, according to the post. The apps are put up on the Play Store by using methods such as confusing unicode characters or hiding such apps in a different locale. In 2017, Google claims to have taken down over a quarter of a million of impersonating apps.
Up next are apps that contain inappropriate content such as pornography, extreme violence, hate, and illegal activities. Google removed tens and thousands of apps with inappropriate content in 2017. The search giant used improved methods, powered by machine learning, to detect such apps.
Finally, the Potentially Harmful Applications (PHAs), a type of malware that act as trojans to conduct SMS fraud, etc were taken down as well. The apps are extremely difficult to detect as they’re made to look quite legitimate by malicious developers. Thanks to Google Play Protect, which was launched in 2017, the annual PHA installs rate was reduced by 50 per cent over year.
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