It has been found that the Google Play store is the main propagation medium for malware on Android phones. Research conducted by NortonLifeLock and the Madrid IMDEA Software Institute found that 67.2% of malicious application installations came from Google Play. However, the study pointed out that this was due to the large number of downloads on Google Play compared to other sources, and added that its defensive measures are indeed effective in most cases. The researchers recorded data from 7.9 million applications on 12 million Android devices in the four months from June to September 2019. Researchers claim that third-party app stores are only responsible for 10.4% of malicious app installations.
The item titled “How did that get into my phone? The distribution of unwanted applications on Android devices has been published on the SemanticsScholar website, and it shows that the Google Play Store is the main source of malware installations on Android phones. Analysis includes from Data on 7.9 million apps from 12 million Android devices. It compares apps downloaded from the Play Store, other markets, web browsers, commercial PPI (pay-per-install) programs, instant messaging, and seven other sources.
The Play Store is the main aggregator of applications for Android devices and has countless applications and games. It was found that 87.2% of the total downloads of apps on Android came from the Play Store, but the large number of downloads is why 67.5% of the installations of malicious apps come from the Play Store. Studies have shown that the vector detection rate (VDR) of the Play Store is still the lowest compared to other sources of app installation.
“its [Play store] VDR is only 0.6%, which is better than all other large distribution vectors. Therefore, the Play market’s defense against unwanted applications is effective, but there are still a large number of unwanted applications that can bypass them, making it the main distribution medium for unwanted applications. “
Interestingly, the unofficial alternate market with a total download volume of 5.7% had just over 10% of malicious installs. Installations from backups accounted for 2% of the total installations, and unnecessary installations accounted for 4.8%. Installations from package installers accounted for 0.7% of the total number of installations and caused 10.5% of unnecessary installations.
It should also be noted that 10% to 24% of user devices will encounter at least one unwanted application. Finally, the study pointed out that compared to Windows, there are far fewer applications distributed through commercial PPI services on Android.
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