Google has removed today an Android app from the official Play Store that was developed by the Iranian government to test and keep track of COVID-19 (coronavirus) infections.

Before being removed from the Play Store, controversy surrounded the app, and several users accused the Iranian government of using the COVID-19 scare to trick citizens into installing the app and then collecting phone numbers and real-time geo-location data.

In hindsight of accusations, ZDNet has asked Lukas Stefanko, an Android malware researcher at ESET, to review the app for any malicious or spyware-like behavior.

“Based on the analysis of the app’s APK, the app is not a malicious Trojan or spyware,” Stefanko told ZDNet earlier today.
A Google spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment on the reasons the app was removed; however, sources familiar with Play Store policies told ZDNet the app was most likely taken down because of its misleading claims — namely that it could detect COVID-19 infections, something that is impossible through an app.

Suspected COVID-19 patients are tested and confirmed as infected following a microbiological analysis of a throat swab.

Source » zdnet