Google cleans up Android malware infection

Patch aims to fix embarrassing apps failure

Malware problem highlights fragmentation issues.

Google has issued a patch to all phones affected by last week’s Android malware debacle, which left thousands of phones at risk. The virus was caused by rogue apps, which accessed personal data, including IMEI numbers and hardware details.

The update, called Android Market Security Tool March 2011, is currently being sent to affected devices, which are said to number around 260,000. An email from Google will tell punters if they’ve been affected, while a second message will confirm the new code has been installed.

58 malware-loaded apps are said to have made their way into Android Market. Google has used its remote kill switch to remove these from phones using them, as well as sending out the patch update.

While it says that phones using software higher than Android 2.2.2 are not affected, this raises some big questions about Android updates. With so many Android owners still using older versions, either through lack of knowledge or hardware limitations, Google needs to find some smart ways to combat similar attacks in the future.

Have you been affected? Let us know on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Via Electronista and TechCrunch
Link: Google Mobile Blog