Google protects you: Play Protect is finally on a slow rollout to mainstream users
We've been hearing about Google Play Protect — Google's solution for device protection — since this year's I/O. And while some beta testers have seen it earlier, the feature seems to currently be on a slow rollout to all users.
What is Play Protect? It's basically an anti-malware tool, which monitors app behavior and gives them a firm slap if they try something funny. To be clear, the Play Store has had various levels of scan for a while now. However, Play Protect ups the ante a bit.
The new service is not only a ghost scanner that checks apps that are live on the Play Store. Once Play Protect reaches your phone, you will actually be able to see its icon and get reports from it. Play Protect will live in the Play Store app and will periodically scan apps on your device and compare results with how the same apps are behaving on other devices. If it finds something out of the ordinary, you will be warned and prompted to delete the offending app. You can also initiate a scan on demand from the Play Protect tab in the Play Store slide-over menu. It's a nice touch, considering that the past few times that actual malware did get inside the Play Store and on to users' smartphones, it was because it was cleverly disguised in innocent, working apps.
Play Protect will also scan 50 million apps in the Play Store per day and mark the "verified safe" ones with its green badge, so you can download with confidence. The new security tool will also become an invisible part of Google's mobile Chrome browser — it will monitor the websites you visit for suspicious activity and raise a red flag when it suspects something wrong going on.