Google apparently has complete control over Android apps installed on devices. Just a few days ago, there were reports that Google can remotely uninstall apps and now, another report has surfaced from the famous Kaspersky security blog that Google can remotely install apps as well.
Google removed two Android apps installed on devices because they misrepresented their purpose. Google said it violated Android’s developer policies. The apps included a program, which can to bootstrap a rootkit into the phone allowing anyone to take control of the phone remotely. However, the developer of the app Jon Oberheide clarified later that it was a test program designed to check how far this kind of an exploit can go undetected.
There have been numerous reports on android security lately though; Google has recently demonstrated that it can take good care of its Android devices remotely.
However, something even more interesting came up recently. It appears Google can remotely install apps as well. Google’s Android devices have an INSTALL_ASSET variable, which can be used to install apps into the device remotely. You can easily guess the remote wipe uses a REMOVE_ASSET feature.
These security features built into Android devices really makes these devices uber cool though, it also raises questions on how far this control goes. To what extent does Google have control over Android data? Once again, Google is making us feel overtly dependent.