While there is no shortage of security apps on Google Play Store, these apps often do not offer any significant benefits to users as reports involving apps on Play Store are pretty common across internet. Recently, a new study has revealed that majority of the security applications found on the Play Store are dubious, unsafe or ineffective.
The latest report comes for an independent testing lab AV-Comparatives. The company noted that in order to find out these apps’ possible benefits, it downloaded over 200 apps from Google Play store earlier this year and only 84 of these apps detected over 30 percent of malicious applications and had zero false alarms. On the other hand, 79 of the security apps detected under 30 percent of the malware samples and had a high false alarm rate.
Interestingly, the remaining apps have been removed from the marketplace as the report suggested that the apps are buggy and unsafe to use. During the test, the lab used an automated process to run 2,000 known malicious applications and 50 good apps. While the major security apps such as Avast, AVG, BullGuard, ESET, Kaspersky, McAfee and Norton detected all of the malicious apps successfully, most of the other apps failed to achieve the feat. In case you are wondering, most of the tested security applications had a review scores of more than four-star or more review score. As a result, you should be extra cautious to choose antivirus app for your smartphone.
Talking about the latest findings, AV-Comparatives’ founder and CEO Andreas Clementi said, “This year’s test once again shows that user ratings are no indicator of how effective a security app is. Many of the apps that failed to provide effective protection against malware nonetheless had very good user ratings in the Google Play Store. Users should be aware that such ratings can at best only relate to the user experience, and at worst will mean that an app has deceived the user into thinking it’s good — e.g. by detecting a harmless app as malicious. Good results in an independent lab test are the best indicator that a program will really protect you. Our annual in-depth review and test of Android security programs provides users with a feature list and user-interface report, letting them pick the best app for their needs.”
You can find the detailed report by going here.
Image: Flickr/Rob Bulmahn