Google will examine new Android developer accounts more closely – VentureBeat

Google will examine new Android developer accounts more closely – VentureBeat

For the better part of two years, Google has made a concerted effort to improve control over data in Android apps, chiefly by introducing system-level changes in Android, refining its Google Play developer policies, requiring developers to disclose the collection and use of sensitive data, and restricting access to certain permissions (like those involving SMS and call logs). But it hasn’t always been fully transparent with about these changes, and toward that end, the Mountain View company today announced that it’s “clarifying” several of its rules and reviewing the way it handles noncompliant apps.“From the outset, we’ve sought to craft Android as a completely open source operating system … This developer-centric approach and openness have been cornerstones of Android’s philosophy from the beginning, ” vice president of product management Sameer Samat wrote in a blog post. “But as the platform grows and evolves, each decision we make comes with trade-offs … This responsibility to users is something we have always taken seriously.”Google says that in the coming weeks, it’ll revamp the email messages it sends policy rejections and appeals to “better explain” with more details, including why a decision was made, how apps might be modified to comply, and how ....

In a related announcement, it said that Google Play Protect — an automated security solution that scans more than 50 billion apps on billions of devices each day — would begin to warn users when they attempt to install apps from any source that don’t target a recent API level.Despite a few bumps in the road, Google’s recent policy changes have measurably decreased the number of predatory Android apps in the wild.The company reports that the number of apps with access to text message and call information has declined by more than 98%. And in its annual Android Security & Privacy Year in Review, Google revealed that in 2018, only 0.08% of devices that used Google Play exclusively for app downloads were affected by potentially harmful applications (PHAs), and that even devices that installed apps from outside of Play — 0.68% of which were affected by one or more PHAs, down from 0.80% in 2017 — saw a 15% reduction in malware.... .

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