Play Protect: Enhancing Android security with Google's new feature

The Google for India 2023 event introduced some notable security features to combat AI-based applications containing malware. Here's all you need to know!

Play Protect: Enhancing Android security with Google's new feature

Friday October 20, 2023,

4 min Read

Artificial Intelligence, celebrated for its groundbreaking advancements, now also leads a darker narrative in the realm of cyberfrauds. Cybercrime, Internet frauds, and banking scams are making daily headlines with new methods to dupe people and one of the biggest culprits responsible for such incidents has been AI.

In 2023, a McAfee survey stated that an estimated 83% of Indians have lost their money due to AI voice call scams which showcases the widespread use of AI when it comes to cyberfrauds.

To tackle such arising issues, Google has launched a new feature for Indian users in the Google for India 2023 event. Here's all you need to know!

Play Protect v/s AI malware 

AI has been a primary focus of debate ever since the generative AI conversational ChatGPT was launched. This is mainly because AI has been the culprit of the majority of scams helping cybercriminals to roll out various tricks to fool people.

In fact, around 47 per cent of Indians have faced AI voice fraud calls or know someone who has experienced them in a survey by McAfee. Amidst the rise of such incidents, Google has a new feature called 'Play Protect'.

This functionality will help users scan applications for malware or malicious software that leverage AI. Users in India can now check applications in real-time before downloading AI-based apps to protect their devices from potential cyber threats.

What does Play Protect do?

Play Protect is a new security feature available for all Android devices. Here's how it works:

  • It runs a safety check apps on Google Play Store before you download them
  • It displays warnings about harmful apps
  • It may remove or disable malicious apps from your device
  • It also checks apps downloaded from other sources that may have malware in them

How does Play Protect work?

This new feature includes on-device capabilities that leverage cloud-based app verification to evaluate whether the apps are Potentially Harmful Applications (PHAs). Additionally, Google Play Protect scans apps daily and flags malicious apps so that users can be alerted and future installs are prevented.

According to Google's Team, Play Protect can scan around 125 billion apps daily, effectively reducing the threat duration. Overall, this feature includes the following types of scans:

  • Daily PHA scan
  • Offline PHA scan
  • Real-time scans for apps downloaded from other sources

It is important to note that the most threatening apps are automatically removed with the help of Google Play Protect.

Sneak Peek of 'Google for India 2023' 

Google Play Protect was unveiled at the 9th edition of Google for India 2023, which was recently held in New Delhi. This annual symposium has consistently served as a melting point of innovation, where futuristic visions for technology and its societal impact meet.

Other than Play Protect, Google unveiled a series of initiatives, each resonating with the dynamic needs of India's vast netizen population.

google pixel

Made in India meets Google Pixel

One of the most anticipated announcements was the localisation of the Google Pixel production. Google Pixel- a smartphone device that runs on ChromeOS or the Android operating system that debuted in October 2016 will now be manufactured in India.

Also Read
Pixel Goes Desi: Google Embraces 'Make in India' with Pixel Production

Search Generative Experience (SGE)

SGE is a tool that integrates with AI to provide AI-powered search results in Google's search engine. In the event, the firm introduced the SGE experiment in India.

Credit for payments

Expanding its functionality of UPI (Unified Payment Interface), the American tech giant has rolled out pre-approved credit lines for Google Pay users. This is in partnership with PSP ICICI Bank so that users can avail of credit and make payments seamlessly.

With tech giants like Google stepping up, safer horizons seem promising. Here's to embracing innovations — and a secure internet experience for all.