Google is boosting Android security in its next release of its operating system – Android O. More serious security measures are being implemented. This release will include control features to restrict permissions that were exploited by ransomware attacks in earlier Android versions.
Google strives to provide a safe and secure experience for users who download apps from its Play Store, and hence it is recommended to download apps only from the Play Store. Generally, it is recommended to download apps only from reputed apps stores such as Apple Store and Google Play Store, as they are safer (but not absolutely secure) than downloading from third-party stores. Google reports that every day it scans approximately 500,000 apps for malware.
Antivirus for Android
Monitoring the huge number of apps being released every day is a surmounting task. Cyber criminals are forever looking for ways to infuse malware, and this necessitates the need for an antivirus for Android, to stay protected. An important factor to be noted is that most antivirus programs are not effective against unknown malware and zero-day exploits.
Find My Device App
Among its numerous security features, Google is offering the “Find My Device” app which helps find the physical location of a device on a map, and if the user decides that it would not be possible to get the device back – all data on it could be wiped out. This tool had earlier been called as “Android Device Manager”, and had not been too popular as its name did not reveal its functionality.
Verified Boot Security
The Google Play app store also features a new “Google Play Protect” section that shows the Google scanned status of apps on the device. Another sophisticated security feature is a “verified boot” process that would detect if the OS of the device was being rolled back to a vulnerable version. This is a very sophisticated form of attack, and in the case of targeted attacks this could have huge implications.
Enhanced Permission Control
The Android has been offering increasing permission control options in its newly released versions, and in Android O – the permission control has been whopped up. Reverse analysis of how ransomware attacked and was able to hijack the device screen revealed that the malware exploited vulnerabilities in the permissions and misused the permissions granted by the user for various functions. In the Android O, attempts have been made to plug these loopholes. Additionally, Google has restricted the wide control provided to certain permissions.
In spite of Google’s efforts, the threat of zero-day exploits and infection through unknown malware still looms high. It would be recommended to protect your device with an antivirus for Android solution that provides Default Deny Security – which allows only good files and blocks all known bad files and all unknown files as well. The threat of the “unknown” file is the most dangerous. When you have to get a security solution – choose an effective solution to address zero-day threats.