Google Play Protect

Google Play Protect is a malware protection and detection service built into Android devices that use Google Mobile Services. Google Play Protect scans for malicious applications on Android devices and removes those that are detected to have potentially harmful software. The user is also warned about apps that violate the Unwanted Software Policy through hiding or misrepresenting important information.

Applications are automatically checked when installed and are also periodically scanned in the background. The user can also initiate a scan directly. On a device, Google Play Protect is found through opening the Play Store, and selecting "My Apps & Games."

When an app is detected to be potentially harmful, the Android user will receive a notification and the option to uninstall the app. At times, Google Play Protect will also disable such apps and keep them from running until they are uninstalled. Additionally, particularly concerning apps may be removed automatically in which case the user is notified.

Along with malware detection, there are two other key features to Google Play Protect. The Find My Device tool can display the location of your Android device. It can lock the device, sign the user out of their Google account or wipe it completely. Secondly, Google Play Protect's safe browsing feature monitors web browsing through a device’s Chrome browser to identify malicious activity from websites. When it detects a site that may exhibit unsound web practices, it warns the user that they may wish to not proceed to the site.

This was last updated in November 2018

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