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Risk analysis of Android applications: A user-centric solution

Android applications (apps) pose many risks to their users, e.g., by including code that may threaten user privacy or system integrity. Most of the current security countermeasures for detecting dangerous apps show some weaknesses, mainly related to users’ understanding and acceptance.
Hence, users would benefit from an effective but simple technique that indicates whether an app is safe or risky to be installed. In this paper, we present MAETROID (Multi-criteria App Evaluator of TRust for AndrOID), a framework to evaluate the trustworthiness of Android apps, i.e., the amount of risk they pose to users, e.g., in terms of confidentiality and integrity.
MAETROID performs a multi-criteria analysis of an app at deploy-time and returns a single easyto-understand evaluation of the app’s risk level (i.e., Trusted, Medium Risk, and High Risk), aimed at driving the user decision on whether or not installing a new app. The criteria include the set of requested permissions and a set of metadata retrieved from the marketplace, denoting the app quality and popularity.
We have tested MAETROID on a set of 11,000 apps both coming from Google Play and from a database of known malicious apps.The results show a good accuracy in both identifying the malicious apps and in terms of false positive rate.


Future Generation Computer Systems, 2016

External authors: Gianluca Dini (Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Informazione, Università di Pisa), Daniele Sgandurra (Imperial College of London)
IIT authors:

Type: Contributo in rivista ISI
Field of reference: Computer Science & Engineering

File: fgcs.pdf

Activity: Sicurezza di dispositivi mobili