Tackling Malware attacks: Google introduces 'panic button' feature in Android

Some malware has been successful in dodging from the inflexible security measures and victoriously entering the Google Play app store. 

Last Updated: Jul 18, 2017, 15:50 PM IST
Tackling Malware attacks: Google introduces 'panic button' feature in Android

Zee Media Bureau / Shrankhla Verma

Apparently threatened by the ransomware attacks like WannaCry and ExPetr, that the world has witnessed in the past few months, Google chose to introduce the phones with a 'Panic button'. It enables the user to return to the home screen provided the 'back' button is pressed multiple number of times in a row. 

The feature was introduced to Android's 7.1 Nougat operating system, designed to stop malicious applications from taking over a user's screen which stops them from exiting the screen. This panic button allows the users to deactivate any application which they suspect could harm their device or have malware, instantly.

XDA Developer Forum, which also happen to be Android code testers, had first developed the 'Panic Mode'. Speculations are that the tech giant, Google, doesn't want to advertise the fact that it's trying to combat malicious application since there wasn't any big announcement regarding the launch of this feature. 

While other methods of avoiding malware  from encrypting and locking your device may include keeping a check over the email attachments you open, checking app permissions, avoiding installation or debarring certain apps and installing an antivirus which scans and cleans your phone on a regular basis and notifies you for any potential threat. 

Malware or 'Malicious software' is a pure profit tactic through forced advertising or adware, stealing sensitive information  (spyware), spreading email spam or child pornography (zombie computers), or to extort money (ransomware).

With over one billion users, Google's mobile platform becomes a soft target for such notorious activities. Some malware has been successful in dodging from the inflexible security measures and victoriously entering the Google Play app store.