Google removed over 700000 malicious apps from the Play Store in 2017


99 percent of apps with abusive content were identified and rejected before anyone could install them in 2017. Google has also been explaining how it has been going after these apps and stopping them, before they get onto individual's devices. Indeed, despite the record-high takedowns of bad apps and malicious developers, many still evaded Google Play's security.

Sensor Tower's Store Intelligence estimates show that year-over-year spending in these apps during the fourth quarter of last year grew almost 88 percent to approximately $242 million, up from an estimated $129 million in the same quarter a year ago.

Kleidermacher also notes that you are 10x more likely to install a harmful app from a non-Play source than Google's official store. Statista pegs the total number of apps on Google Play at 2.6 million in December 2016 and 3.5 million in December 2017, a 35 percent growth.

This was possible, Google says, thanks to its implementation user education and the use of machine learning models and techniques to detect abusive app content and behaviors such as impersonation, inappropriate content, or malware.

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The Google Play team past year developed new detection models and techniques that can identify repeat offenders and abusive developer networks at scale. Inappropriate content is pretty self-explanatory, but it includes extreme violence, hate, illegal activities and such. When it comes to malicious apps that try to impersonate legitimate ones, 2017 saw Google remove a whopping 250,000 of these. Finally there is Potentially Harmful Applications or PHA's.

According to, Indonesian users will no longer find Blued when searching for the keyword on Google Play Store, but they will be given other options of similar apps.

The latest number represented an increase of 4 percent year on year from a year ago.

Google is quite aware that it can't detect every single malicious app before it hits the store, though. To combat this, Google wants to teach users how to make better security decisions, though it's also using Google's Safe Browsing tools to detect if an app connects to a known bad site.