Installing suspicious or malicious Android apps on a device can jeopardize data and security. If you see a suspicious app and want to report it to Google, here’s how.
Before you start, you need to be aware that most Android malware does not have a warning banner. Knowing how to avoid Android malware in the first place is the best form of protection. You can start by just installing apps from the Google Play Store.
If you need to install apps outside of the Play Store, you need to make sure the source is trusted before sideloading onto your device. Third-party app stores like Amazon Appstore are a better place than websites that offer direct download APK files.
Don’t assume, though, that every app in the Google Play Store is safe to use. Occasionally suspicious apps still manage to appear on it. Thankfully, Google offers users a way to report apps that feel suspicious.
The easiest way to report a suspicious app is through the Google Play Store on your device. Open the Play Store app and search for the app you suspect.
In the top right section of the apps list, you’ll see a three-dot menu button. Tap here and click Flag as Inappropriate.
You will see a list of 7 categories to complain about. Choose the reason that best fits your complaint. If the app reports for example malware, select Harmful to Device or Data .
If there is no Harmful to Device or Data option or it doesn’t match your selection, select Other Objection at the bottom of the list.
When done, select Submit .
You can’t add comments to a complaint if you report it via the Google Play Store. If you want a more detailed report or more supporting evidence, the best way is to make an online complaint.
Google has a specific reporting form for users to report online apps through the Google Play Store help center website. This method is useful if you don’t have a device on hand or, as mentioned earlier, you need more information for a claim.
Open the help center website, scroll down to Help by Product Type and click on Google Play Store.
Under Fix an Issue , click Report Content Issues or Violations .
On this page, scroll down to Computer and under Flag Apps, Games, or Music as Inappropriate , click the Report Inappropriate Apps Form link.
The form is pretty simple with options to report the app and some reasons like graphic content, illegal activity, etc. Like reporting directly through the Google Play Store, you need to choose a reason for reporting. application report.
If you think the app has malware, select the Harmful to Device or Data option. You can also choose Other Objection if the available reasons do not suit you.
Where the form requires, provide a brief explanation of why you are reporting the application, providing as much detail as possible. If the app is still available for download, find the web URL for it on the Google Play Store website and submit it in the report.
Confirm your name and email address and click Submit to finish.
Either way, your report will be sent to Google for review and analysis. If Google believes your claim is valid, the app will be removed from the Google Play Store.
Wishing you success!