As for now, Google has removed over 110,000 apps from the Google Play Store just in the first half of 2021, which makes this the first substantial decrease in the total number of Android apps in the last three years. Over 55,000 apps were purged between January and April, over 60,000 disappeared in May alone, and more are to go.
Currently, there are 2.8 million apps in the Play Store, which is 2 million less than in September last year. A decline of these proportions was last recorded in 2018 when totals went from 3.6 million to 2.8 million.
At first, android users were confused as to why their apps are being removed from Play Store, however, when Google made the announcement, things became much clearer. Google has been removing apps from the Play Store that are:
- Violating the Play Store policies
- Apps that have been infected by malware, particularly the Joker malware
- Due to a new set of rules that Google announced in April
In general, controlling the quality of Play Store titles has been a long-accruing and seemingly intractable problem. Even with the new set of rules that Google announced at the end of April, they still don’t directly address developers who produce low-quality clones as well as outright fake apps that don’t work.
Finally, while it may be a bummer that some of your favorite apps are being deleted from your phone, it’s better to find an alternative than to end up scammed or hacked.
How to Check if your Phone has Malicious Apps?
Although the internet is one of the greatest inventions of the 21st century, it is also full of surprises, both good and bad. With that said, you must do everything in your power to ensure your safety when surfing online.
One of the most important things you should do when you want to download an app on your phone is to check for malicious apps. Believe it or not, malicious apps are very common and can endanger your personal information.
If you’re a gambling enthusiast scared of having your favorite casino app removed from your phone, there’s no need to worry, as long as you play with reputable providers, you’ll be alright. If interested in real money games, know that both Android and iOS devices are the main platforms used for real money games according to a source.
Signs of malware on your Android phone
For instance, If you notice apps you don’t recognize on your phone, if you’re constantly seeing ads, regardless of which app you are using, or if your battery is draining much faster than usual then your phone is probably infected.
With that said, make sure to keep an eye on these signs. In case you’re not taking this seriously, the consequences could be horrific. If you thought that there is no way a popular app with millions of downloads can’t be infected, you are wrong.
Not so long ago, Google removed Play Store apps that had 5.8 million downloads, so, clearly, there are no rules when it comes to malicious apps. These apps tricked users by having them log in to their Facebook accounts and then stealing their login details.
How to Avoid Malware on Your Android Phone?
No matter if you already have malware on your device and are trying to stop it or you want to protect yourself from ever having one, there are some simple and effective steps you should follow.
First and foremost, you should always keep your phone’s software updated. This is one of the most essential steps a user can take to protect their devices and accounts. This can patch vulnerabilities and cut off the access of the malicious software, as well as keep malware from working in the first place.
Another thing you should do is review what permissions your apps have. If, for example, you notice that your game has the ability to send SMS messages, that can be a red flag. Additionally, you should consider installing antivirus apps as they come in handy.
Finally, you should avoid or get rid of apps that are downloaded from third-party app stores. These apps don’t go through reviews by Google and can do you much harm.