Since last Wednesday (26) it has become more complex and difficult install applications downloaded outside the Play Store in Brazil. O Google launched the new Play Protect, which blocks APKs with sensitive permissions obtained from unverified sources. This initiative combats fraud and scams.

O Play Protect, part of a pilot project that began this Wednesday (26), has already been tested in Singapore and Thailand. Activation is automatic on Android devices with Google Play Services.

Eugene LeaderDirector of Android Security Strategy, highlights that 95% of malware attacks come from external apps. These usually require permissions that facilitate malicious actions and can compromise the smartphone’s security.

Applications targeted by blocking

Google Play Protect will not block all APKs. He will use artificial intelligence to identify risks and prevent the installation of apps that:

  • were downloaded via browsers, messaging applications (WhatsApp, Telegram) or file managers;
  • request permission to read SMS, notifications or accessibility features.

If an APK fits these criteria, Play Protect will automatically block installation and explain the reason for the restriction.

Let’s face it, basically all the APKs that we install on our Android smartphones are downloaded via a web browser. Therefore, it will be much more difficult to install APKs with Play Protect enabled.Therefore, it will be much more difficult to install APKs with Play Protect enabled.

User will be notified about the reason for blocking the installation of an APK (Image: Disclosure/Google)

It will still be possible to install “prohibited” APKs

Google advises developers affected by the new policy to review their app permissions and follow Android’s recommended guidelines. This should be a big problem for developers of “App Blocker” applications. This type of app requires very deep permissions in the operating system.

According to Alex Freire, engineering director at Google Brazil, the company does not intend to restrict all alternative stores, allowing the use of others such as Samsung Galaxy Store ou Amazon Appstore.

Although Play Protect is an excellent security measure, let’s face it, it can get in the way when you want to install a legitimate app that isn’t available on the Play Store. In this case, it is still viable to install APKs from unofficial sources.

To do this, disable Play Protect: open the Google Play Store, click on the profile icon, select Play Protect, tap the gear and uncheck “Check apps with Play Protect”.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *