Google unleashes its kill switch to Android malware on users' devices

Google unleashes its kill switch to Android malware on users' devices
Google has had its rottweiler chained until now, but the Android team was obviously fed up with the amount of malware in the Market and turned on the kill switch last week.

A "number" of apps which were known to report user data that could possibly be used for malicious purposes, have been taken off Android Market, and Google has used its remote kill switch to extinguish them from Android devices they have been already installed on. The Mountain view crowd has also notified the authorities about the evil software creations, in line with its " Do no evil" moto.

While it's a bit creepy that Google, Apple and Microsoft all have kill switches that can intrude in your personal smartphone space, in this case it's for the better.

The apps have been reporting back to the mothership user-specific data: “For affected devices, we believe that the only information the attacker(s) were able to gather was device-specific (IMEI/IMSI, unique codes which are used to identify mobile devices, and the version of Android running on your device),” says Google.

Still, there might have been attempts to get into more personal details, and the Android team says they've patched the vulnerabilities that existed from the Android 2.2.2 version onwards. The type of exploits hackers use is now known, and Google claims it is hard at work to prevent such malicious codes in the future.

Android's kill switch uses the same technology that allows Android Market on the web to push apps wirelessly to your device.

via Softpedia



1. hawk62

Posts: 320; Member since: Nov 21, 2009

And some of the apps might have downloaded other programs. Google cant fix that and ur phone might still have viruses. Haha to the "better" open os of google

2. giantgnome

Posts: 67; Member since: Feb 11, 2011

Wow, you really need to get a life. Maybe throw away whatever phones you have now and take a break. No android or iphones, just take a long break... It'd be good for you. Maybe you won't be such a loser.

6. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

As it has been pointed out multiple times, Hawk, Apple products aren't invincible either. And the risk is no greater than having a PC. And I don't know about you, but I've never had a virus get on my phone. And only a couple times on my computer.

8. zuno gyakusatsu

Posts: 257; Member since: Mar 16, 2010

if only they could fix the suckiness of android, that would be the day.

9. iHateCrapple

Posts: 734; Member since: Feb 12, 2010

Fix it for us zuno

3. superpooburger

Posts: 31; Member since: Feb 17, 2011

here we have an other reason to not buy android! its 3th or 4th i know, while even 1 of those reasons is important enougth to not buy one...

5. messiah

Posts: 438; Member since: Feb 19, 2010

3th? Thank god we are not up to 19rd. Lol.

4. cc unregistered

Yeah. Because the potential of possibly getting some malware is what stops millions of people from buying PC's every day. Are you fucking retarded? Did you smoke crack RIGHT before you got on the computer today or did you take a break before you jumped on the ol' interwebs to stir up some ruckus?

7. TheFunnyMan

Posts: 77; Member since: Jan 26, 2011

Hawk is rabble rousing over there, with his ignorant comments about Android. Its ok, though, he is just upset that Apple isnt top dog anymore and his products are offically outdated

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