Tech

Android Q to get a ton of new privacy features

Android Q to get a ton of new privacy features

It tried to check whether the security apps could show a red flag on such malware.

Up to 150 million Android users have potentially been exposed to rogue malware via as many as 206 applications previously found on the Google Play Store, Check Point Research reports.

Numerous poorly performing apps in the test were not actually performing malware scans, according to AV-Comparatives.

According to AV-Comparatives 170 of the 250, Android antivirus apps failed the basic tests and turned out to be a sham.

Google Play Store has lately been the victim of malware apps with millions of downloads, and while the company has been rapid in dealing with them, more issues keep popping up. A successful scam app may be downloaded many times before it is found to be a scam.

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The code used to push the ads imitated advertising software which is commonly used by the developers of free apps to monetize their products. As per a blog dedicated to Android developers, Google has revealed that all icons of apps will now have a "squircle" shape. It might have been harder to detect and stop because of that, as the infected apps are safe and legitimate if it weren't for the adware that managed to sneak past, not to mention that it wasn't out to steal personal data of users.

Traditional adware typically hijacks ads or displays additional ads to users, but SimBad is that and more, reflecting a far more serious malware threat. The researchers recommend using apps only of well-known, verified, and reputable vendors. They will be provided with three options to share their location data - when the app is running, all the time - even when it is running in the background and never.

The apps were removed from the Google Play Store after the Check Point researchers informed Google of their findings.

One of the biggest changes Google has made to Android's privacy is that Android Q will now offer better location settings for apps. A lot of them haven't even upgraded to Android Oreo making the phones that have downloaded the apps vulnerable to attacks. Android Q will allow apps to request those special effects so they aren't limited to camera apps. This tactic is common amongst Android malware, and this one is not an exception.

As you'd expect from such a major release, the laundry list of new features, enhancements and fixes is extensive and delves into everything from superficial interface changes to developer tools and APIs that most of us would rarely hear about or even realise existed.

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