Google Kills Bad Android Apps from Users' Phones
Google is taking powerful steps to ease the pain of people who accidentally downloaded one of the more than 50 rogue apps found in the Android App Market last week.
Google announced on its Mobile Blog that in addition to removing the infected Android apps from the app market, it has begun remotely removing the malicious applications from affected devices.
TechCrunch reported that 58 malicious apps were found, and they were downloaded about 260,000 times before Google removed them from the Android Market on March 1.
The bad apps -- including Spider Man, Super Guitar Solo and Super History Eraser -- all contained a piece of software called DroidDream, capable of stealing a phone's sensitive data and downloading malicious code from remote servers.
We are pushing an Android Market security updated to all affected devices that undoes the exploits to prevent the attacker(s) from accessing any more information from affected devices, Google wrote.
Google said on Saturday (March 5) that it would contact people who'd downloaded the corrupted apps within 72 hours, with an e-mail from email@example.com.
Google also suspended the Android Marketplace accounts of developers associated with uploading apps containing DroidDream, and has contacted law enforcement.
In the Android Terms of Service, Google reserves the right to do exactly this for exactly this reason. All the infected apps were free, and many were available in non-infected versions from other publishers in the Android Market.
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