Google Is Paying Back Thousands Of Android Users For Letting A Fake Virus Scanning App Into Its Store

Virus Shield ScamGoogle Play Store/Android PoliceAndroid Police was able to screengrab the app before it got taken down

Google has given refunds to people who downloaded Virus Shield, a top selling Android app that didn’t work, according to Michael Crider of Android Police.

Users are getting a full refund as well as an extra $US5 credit to the Google Play Store for Android apps.

Around 10,000 people downloaded the $US3.99 app before Google finally took it down.

Virus Shield promised it could protect your Android phone from harmful spyware, but never actually scanned your phone for malware. Instead, it just showed a green check mark saying the scan was finished.

Google’s refund is coming two weeks after the app was pulled from the store.

Users have a 15 minute window to get all of their money back after they download something from Google Play. Once that window is closed, customers are stuck with the app.

The Google Play Store has been plagued with harmful apps lately. Last week, a security firm discovered that Google let in a malicious app which could manipulate app icons and take people to phishing sites.

Here’s the email Android owners who downloaded Virus Shield received from Google:


We’re reaching out to you because you recently purchased the “Virus Shield” app on Google Play.

This app made the false claim that it provided one-click virus protection; in reality, it did not.

Google Play’s policies strictly prohibit false claims like these, and in light of this, we’re refunding you for your “Virus Shield” purchase. You should see funds returned to your account within the next 14 days.

Additionally we’d like to offer you $US5 promotional credit1, which can be used to purchase digital content on Google Play such as apps, games, books, music and movies.

Your credit redemption code is XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX. Click or tap here to redeem. For help redeeming, please visit our Help Center.

We’re sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused; rest assured that we’re always working to make Google Play better for our users.

Thank you,

Google Play Support

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