Google has cleaned up handsets affected by last week’s malware scare, in what appears to be the first major test of the open policy the search giant applies to its Android software store.
The infestation of around 60 harmful apps, which were disguised as some of the Android Market’s most popular free titles, is believed to have affected up to 200,000 Android phone owners.
Initially the problem was met with a somewhat stony silence from Google. However, it has since announced via its official blog that it has used a kill switch to remotely uninstall the malware and is tightening security measures for the Android Market.
Google stated: “We are adding a number of measures to help prevent additional malicious applications using similar exploits from being distributed through Android Market and are working with our partners to provide the fix for the underlying security issues.”
“For affected devices, we believe that the only information the attacker(s) were able to gather was device-specific (IMEI/IMSI, unique codes which are used to identify mobile devices, and the version of Android running on your device).”
It is believed that only phones running Android version 2.2.2 or higher were affected. When downloaded, the apps sought out root data, potentially passing on personal data and inviting other malware on to your smartie.