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Those fooled by the Virus Shield app scam on Google Play to get a refund, and more

Posted: , by Maxwell R.

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Those fooled by the Virus Shield app scam on Google Play to get a refund, and more
Earlier this month, it was determined that a top rated and “top paid” app in the Google Play store, Virus Shield, was a complete sham, the $3.99 spent on the app yielded the user none of the proclaimed protections from “harmful apps being installed on your device.”

Still, in no time, the app snookered at least 30,000 people, netting the developer, Deviant Solutions, tens-of-thousands of dollars in revenue for an app that did nothing.

The good news is not only that Google is reimbursing people their $3.99 for the purchase, they will also get a $5 Play Store voucher. This is no doubt an olive branch to smooth any ruffled feathers those may have about Google Play being a sort of “wild, wild west” environment for apps.

If you happen to be one of the unfortunate buyers of this program you should be receiving an email from Google as follows:

Hello,

We're reaching out to you because you recently purchased the “Virus Shield” app on Google Play.

This app made the false claim that it provided one-click virus protection; in reality, it did not.

Google Play's policies strictly prohibit false claims like these, and in light of this, we're refunding you for your "Virus Shield" purchase. You should see funds returned to your account within the next 14 days.

Additionally we'd like to offer you $5 promotional credit1, which can be used to purchase digital content on Google Play such as apps, games, books, music and movies.

Your credit redemption code is XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX. Click or tap here to redeem. For help redeeming, please visit our Help Center.

We're sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused; rest assured that we're always working to make Google Play better for our users.

Thank you,
Google Play Support


source: Android Police

25 Comments
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posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:19 6

1. fzacek (Posts: 1470; Member since: 26 Jan 2014)


What happened to the developer? I hope he gets punished real good...

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 19:55 5

9. akki20892 (Posts: 3328; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


I seen him, he was crying.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 04:17 1

18. vincelongman (Posts: 1062; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


I saw an article that said he apologized, and said he made a mistake
Didn't see anything about punishment, I hope he get some kind of fine and ban

Also, am I the only one who wishes I bought the app even though it was obviously unless

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:21 9

2. wilsong17 (Posts: 837; Member since: 10 Mar 2013)


Good job Google

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 09:52

23. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Yea....nice move Google.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:28 3

3. regkilla (Posts: 83; Member since: 13 Sep 2012)


Take that Fandroids!

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:46 3

4. Duketytz (Posts: 414; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)


What does this have to do with fandroid?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:52 13

5. tech2 (Posts: 1926; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


What more did you expect from a cigarette smoking chimp.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 19:37

8. regkilla (Posts: 83; Member since: 13 Sep 2012)


Greatness.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 21:56

12. nvrhde (Posts: 69; Member since: 10 Nov 2012)


Ohhh that hurts

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 07:52 3

21. Reluctant_Human (Posts: 847; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)


@regkilla

ummm... Google caught the fake app (that although was fake, it was not malicious). Had it removed. Refunded the money. Then gave them a $5 credit. I fail to understand your logic but then again I don't speak retard.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 09:54

25. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Exactly...lol.

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 09:53 2

24. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Google refunding the money and giving a $5 voucher...

I will take that all day any day....thanks...

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 18:59 4

6. papss (unregistered)


I too want to know what trouble this guy will get in. Also are we sure this guy didn't add some sort of spy software to get personal info? How are these reviews so positive for this "app"? Are the users really that oblivious?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 20:30 2

10. The-Sailor-Man (Posts: 726; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)


Google is responsible, not to let malicious apps in Google Play, not to check the quality of the apps. The users must evaluate the apps.
How could someone be punished because the app do nothing?
Google can just ban him, because of the false ad. Nothing else.
Kudos for Google that makes this great move, though.
Users must learn NOT to buy without trial version.
The stupid users are not only in the Apple's team. You can find some in Android team too, now. Many came from Apple to Android lately

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 04:55 1

19. Sniggly (Posts: 6839; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


There was an XKCD app that showed how typical reviews for apps can go.

https://xkcd.com/937/

I think that there was a similar issue here.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 19:06

7. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2786; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


This is a good reminder that just because something is in the Google Play store, it doesn't mean that it's safe. When it comes to apps -- on any platform -- caveat emptor.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 20:33

11. The-Sailor-Man (Posts: 726; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)


No one say yet, that this app is NOT SAVE. They say it just do NOTHING.

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 22:17

14. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2786; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


A few days ago, I read that it stole your personal information. To me that is not safe :)

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 23:55 1

15. LoveHater (Posts: 118; Member since: 09 Oct 2013)


Then u have not gone through CODE of this app,
This app simply turn its image after clicking on the scan button,,
Go through AndroidPolice comprehensive wirteup for this app,

It not unsafe,, it just that it doesn't do anything

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 01:37

16. 0xFFFF (Posts: 2786; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)


I didn't review the code because I didn't buy the app :)

Now I think that because of the way the Android store works, the scammer who made this app got the credit card information for all of his customers. Do you know if this is the case?

posted on 20 Apr 2014, 22:17 3

13. mickeygosselin (Posts: 14; Member since: 11 Dec 2013)


I kinda wish I bought this "anti-virus" program just so I could get that additional $5 along with the $3.99 for a false app

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 07:46 1

20. blingblingthing (Posts: 424; Member since: 23 Oct 2012)


LOL, good point.
I guess there is a good reason to by a Mobile Anti Virus

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 02:21

17. express77 (unregistered)


What do trolls and haters have to say?

posted on 21 Apr 2014, 09:15 1

22. waryjrock (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Apr 2014)


So because these people were idiots they get free credit? I'm sorry but go ahead and refund the money but don't reward stupidity.

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