Google is taking another step toward improving security on Android devices. The company already scans apps submitted to the Google Play store for known malware, and offers users the option of scanning apps when you install them on your device.

But what if you install an app that Google later discovers contains malware? Soon you’ll be able to scan for that too.

Verify apps

Computer World reports Google plans to roll out an update to pretty much everyone running Android 2.3 or later in the coming weeks and months. It’ll allow you to scan for harmful apps on a continuous basis.

As long as the “verify apps” option is enabled, your phone or tablet won’t just look for problems when you’re installing a new app — it’ll let you know if there are problems with an app you’re already running.

It’ll also help you discover if there are problems with apps you installed before Google rolled out the Verify Apps feature of with apps that might have been installed without your knowledge (perhaps you loaned your phone to your kid, for instance).

In other words, Google’s giving you one less reason to install a third-party anti-malware app.

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7 replies on “Google to scan your Android apps for malware continuously”

  1. What about NSA spyware? Oh i forgot Google condone illegal spying….

  2. Interesting. That it’s part of the OS seems like it’d affect your phone’s performance a lot less.

  3. Fuck off my phone google!!!
    I hate google beeing so intrusive.. stop checking my phone and my data… its mine, my decition on what I install and run on my phone.. Just open the feature AppOps on all Android OS so that we can have more control over what 3rd parties and google is reading, that is all we need google. GIVE US CONTROL!

    1. What a dramatic performance.

      You have control. Uncheck “verify apps”. Don’t enter a gmail account into Play store and disable whatever built in apps (under settings->apps) you want (I kill Facebook, Pinyin, iWnn IME, Korean keyboard and other bloatware as soon as I get the phone. You can easily kill Hangouts and Google+ if you don’t use them). And for crying out loud stop whinging. It’s a simple thing to do.

      1. Or not – search for the “Lumia Phones Leaking Private Data To Microsoft” article on Slashdot.

  4. I wonder how much this will affect resources (ie. CPU, RAM, disk IO and battery life). ARM peak performance and efficiency seem to be plateauing. As usual battery technology is slow to improve. OEMs can only make the battery so big before people start complaining about thick phones (I wouldn’t mind a thicker phone though). If this scans existing apps when they’re not running then OEMs may need to start putting in more expensive faster internal storage. Android already has lag issues when there’s some IO going on.

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