Google Uses Remote Kill Switch to Deactivate Android Malware Apps

Google Uses Remote Kill Switch to Deactivate Android Malware Apps

The malware threat on the open-source Google Android platform is getting real. Over the weekend, a number of apps on the Google Android Market were discovered with malware, which prompted Google to pull the infected apps off the market. Nonetheless, it was a measure too late, with at least 50,000 users downloading the infected apps before it was yanked off. Following up, Google has activated its remote kill switch, which forcibly uninstalls the app and sent out an email to the affected users to explain the situation.

Ars Technica - Google removed a number of malicious applications from the Android Market last week. The programs exploited a vulnerability in the platform that allows attackers to gain root access and apparently create a backdoor for deploying further malware. In a statement posted on the official Google Mobile blog this weekend by Android security lead Rich Cannings, the company has clarified the situation and described the steps it is taking to address the problem.

Right now, the worrying question is - how many more malware apps will appear on the Google Android Market? Should Google take a more hands-on approach to prevent more infected apps showing up? While Apple's iOS platform is all locked up and scrutinized, we've got to admit that in contrast to the open nature of Google's Android Market, it is relatively safer from malware apps.

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