Google’s Security Upgrades Following Cyber Attack, and How they Impact App Publishers

Phishing

A week or so back, a well-organized online phishing attack plagued millions of Gmail. The massive attack attempted to take control of the victims’ accounts and to project itself over their contacts as well.

The worm reached the users’ inboxes under the mask of a mail from a contact, asking the users to open an attached file. While opening the file, the users would need to transfer control over their accounts to the fake application, thereby letting the attackers in.

Following the attack, Google is re-arranging its web application systems with the goal of enhancing security and preventing such infiltrations in the future. Some of these changes impact the app development field in the following ways:

Delays on publishing
The tech giant is now remodeling its app publishing structure as well as its risk analysis methods. The changes would leave users unaffected, but add strain to publishers in the web app space. The publishing process may now be slower, and developers might have to cope with lengthier delays.

Intense risk assessment and review
In addition to this, the firm is broadening its risk evaluation standards and bringing more intense methods. As a result, certain web applications would have to go through a manual review from now on.
Apps that go through this route would not be licensed to reach users until the review is complete. The evaluation process could take a week or so, according to sources.

Stringency on misleading users
The corporation is also changing its web development process in a manner that prevents developers from bringing or modifying apps in a manner so as to mislead users. The cause for this change is that the entity who had directed the attack named the web app ‘Google Docs’ to trick users into opening the app.

Mark Risher, director of the firm’s Counter Abuse Technology, made a written statement on the attack, in which he confirmed that the firm is revamping its approach towards these applications for augmented security and reduce the risk of such attacks in the future.
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