Huawei smartphones are flagging Google app as a virus


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Nov 10, 2017

Some Huawei and HONOR smartphones have started flagging the Google app as a virus. Users across Reddit, Google Support, and various other forums, have started reporting the issue, and sharing screenshots.

The phones are saying that the “app is infected”, and they label it as a “TrojanSMS-PA” virus. The prompt says that the app has the ability to send SMS messages without the user’s consent, and poses a risk related to that.

This is the full warning message: “This app was detected sending SMS privately, enticing users to pay with adult content, downloading/installing apps privately, or stealing private information, which may cause property damage and privacy leakage. We recommend uninstalling it immediately.”

Norton & Sophos did not flag it​

Of course, users pushed the app through other antivirus apps, such as Norton and Sophos, and it was not flagged as a virus app. Huawei did not respond to this by the time we wrote this article, but it could soon.

Now, as many of you know, Google apps are not officially available for Huawei smartphones due to the US ban. There are ways to get them running, like through GSpace, but you can’t even sideload them in a normal way, as they won’t work without Google Services. You have to use an emulator such as GSpace.

The thing is, we’re not sure if this warning is popping up on devices that don’t have Google services, or those that do. Chances are it’s the first one, though, as HONOR is also mentioned, and this app seems to be installed directly on the phone.

This seems to be a bug​

Now, it seems like Huawei software mixed up the Google app for a virus, it could be a bug or something of the sort. The Google app is most certainly not a trojan virus, so that has to be a mistake of some sort.

Huawei will likely address this soon. In the meantime, if you’re having the same issue, and can’t really install the app, there are ways to step around it. You can try removing the app and reinstalling it. Clearing the data from Huawei’s Phone Manager app also helped some users.


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Content Creator
Apr 24, 2016
Avast confirms it tagged Google app as malware on Android phones
While Google couldn't pinpoint the security service or app that was triggering the false positive, Avast confirmed on Tuesday that its Android antivirus SDK was the one that mistakenly tagged the Google Quick Search Box app launcher as malware.

Avast said Huawei's Optimizer app showed the malware alerts on Huawei devices but didn't provide any details regarding affected Honor and Vivo devices.

"On October 29th, it was reported to Avast that its antivirus Software Development Kit (SDK) for Android was incorrectly flagging the Google Quick Search Box as malware on Huawei phones," the company said.

"This SDK delivers the antivirus component of Huawei's Optimizer app, a device management application that also provides clean-up and performance features."

The cybersecurity firm added that the issue only affected users outside China and was addressed on Monday, October 30.

"The issue affected Huawei customers outside of China only, and a small number of Honor and Vivo customers. A fix was implemented on October 30th which fully resolved the issue," Avast said.

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