Keeping the Play Store trusted: fighting fraud and spam installs

Posted by Kazushi Nagayama, Search Quality Analyst, and Andrew Ahn, Product

We strive to continuously make Google Play the best platform for enjoying and
discovering the most innovative and trusted apps. Today we are announcing
additional enhancements to protect the integrity of the store.

Our teams work every day to improve the quality of our discovery systems. These
content discovery systems ensure that users can find and download apps they will
love. From time to time, we observe instances of developers attempting to
manipulate the placement of their apps through illegitimate means like
fraudulent installs, fake reviews, and incentivized ratings. These attempts not
only violate the href="">Google Play
Developer Policy, but also harm our community of developers by hindering
their chances of being discovered or recommended through our systems.
Ultimately, they put the end users at risk of making wrong decisions based on
inaccurate, unauthentic information.

Today we are rolling out improved detection and filtering systems to combat such
manipulation attempts. If an install is conducted with the intention to
manipulate an app's placement on Google Play, our systems will detect and filter
it. Furthermore, developers who continue to exhibit such behaviors could have
their apps taken down from Google Play.

In the vast majority of cases, no action will be needed. If you are asking
someone else to promote your app (e.g., third-party marketing agency), we advise
you to make sure that the promotion is based on legitimate practices. In case of
questions, please check out the href="">Developer Support

These important changes will help protect the integrity of Google Play, our
developer community, and ultimately our end user. Thank you for your support in
building the world's most trusted store for apps and games!