Android malware has been an issue over the past year. Granted, most of the numbers we see out of security software companies are inflated — including malicious apps from third-party sources and ignoring small download figures — but that’s not to say that we can just brush that dirt off our shoulders.
Google knows this, and has for a while. Despite the fact that downloads of malicious apps are down 40 percent between the first and second half of 2011, seeing that 14,000, 30,000, or even 260,000 devices have been affected by this or that malicious app requires action. That said, Google is adding a new security layer to the Android Market: codenamed Bouncer.
With Bouncer, Google is recognizing this issue without making things difficult on developers. Devs will still be able to submit an app and see it in search results within minutes — Bouncer’s scanning process only takes seconds — and they’ll still be able to register for $25 and a few clicks on “Accept.”
But… now that Bouncer is in place, previous offenders will have a much more difficult time sneaking back on to the platform by registering under a new name. According to Google’s blog post, the search giant will be “analyzing new developer accounts to help prevent malicious and repeat-offending developers from coming back.”
This is what I believe will make the biggest difference when it comes to the threat of Android malware, and I’m more than thrilled that the company is making it a priority moving forward.