Around 600 apps removed in massive Google Play adware crackdown

With the recent removal of 600 Google Play Store apps and subsequent developer bans, Google has shown that developers that break the rules by showing out-of-app ads will not be tolerated.

Out-of-app ads originate from one app but are shown on top of other apps or the device’s home screen, therefore making it unclear where they originate from.

As an added measure, the developers that disrespected the rules were also banned from Google’s ad monetisation platforms – namely Google Ad Manager and Google AdMob.

This will prevent them from monetising apps that they may distribute even outside of Google Play.

According to Google’s senior product manager for ad traffic quality Per Bjorke, Google decided to step in right after becoming aware of the new technique that certain developers had been taking advantage of to show out-of-app ads.

Bjorke said that Google used a machine-learning approach to detect them.

BuzzFeed reporter Craig Silverman claims that Cheetah Mobile, one of the biggest names in the global Android app development industry, has found itself banned.

Back in 2018, Silverman exposed the developer for being involved in certain forms of ad fraud.

Google made it clear that those who infringe on ad rules will face further scrutiny as time goes on.

In fact, Google is taking a structured approach to resolving the matter.

Firstly, Android OS maker will continue its efforts to crack down on out-of-app ads, as it marked it as one of the worst forms of abuse.

Secondly, additional tools for app makers have been announced that will help developers remain compliant with the rules, therefore making sure that they realise that there is a limit to how far they can take their advertising.

Thirdly, Google will change the way that Android OS is designed in an effort to combat out-of-app ads – the concrete changes to be implemented; however, still remain a mystery.