Google bans app developer with 600 million downloads for being a fake click factory

Google is banning a popular Chinese developer from its Google Play Store and is systematically deleting dozens of its applications after BuzzFeed and security researchers discovered that the developer was committing advertising fraud and abusing the user permissions. It was discovered that the Chinese developer DO Global, which is partly owned by Baidu, was producing false ad clicks for revenue, among other fraudulent practices.

"We take our responsibility to protect users and advertisers seriously, and invest in tools and resources to combat fraud and abuse worldwide. "We actively investigate malicious behavior, and when we find violations, we take action, including removing a developer's ability to monetize their application with AdMob or publish to Play," said Google The Verge in a statement. [19659003] Google did not officially confirm that it is totally banning DO Global, but The Verge understands that report BuzzFeed is accurate.

The researchers found that at least six applications contained code to click on a fake advertisement that ran in the background, even when a user kept the application closed. DO Global had approximately 100 applications in Play Store, many of them included in other developer names, such as "Pic Tools Group". BuzzFeed reports that 46 of them are no more.

google bans app developer with 600 million downloads for being a fake click factory

Check Point wrote in their research, "In a world where advertising revenue can generate a very high income, it's not surprising why malicious actors look for fraudulent activities against advertising agencies. "Following the money" is a good rule when investigating a malicious campaign. "He reviewed the applications after he BuzzFeed contacted them, and after he published his findings last week, Google took action.

This is not the first time that Google has had to eliminate a large number of applications for infractions.In January of last year, Google deleted 60 Play Store games after Check Point detected a malicious error in applications that showed pornographic ads, many of the games were aimed at children.

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