Huawei flags this app as a Google trojan

Emre Çitak
Oct 30, 2023
Mobile Computing

In recent weeks, Huawei phone users began reporting that their devices were flagging the Google app as a virus. The issue was widespread, affecting users of all Huawei and Honor devices, regardless of the model or Android version.

The virus warning was being generated by the Optimizer app, a pre-installed app on Huawei devices that is used to scan for and remove malware. The Optimizer app identified the Google app as a Google trojan, specifically TrojanSMS-PA.

TrojanSMS-PA is a type of malware that can send premium-rate SMS messages without the user's knowledge or consent. This can result in significant financial losses for the victim.

The fact that the Google app was being flagged as a virus by Huawei phones caused widespread concern among users. Many people were unsure whether it was safe to continue using the Google app on their devices.

Why is Huawei seeing the app as a Google trojan?

It is not clear what caused them to flag the Google app as a Google trojan. However, it is possible that there was a conflict between the two apps.

The Google app is a complex system that includes a variety of different components. It is possible that the Optimizer app misinterpreted one of these components as a virus.

What did Huawei and Google do to fix the issue?

Huawei and Google were both not quick to respond to the issue. While Huawei users are still waiting for an explanation, it is possible that the smartphone manufacturer will soon release an update for the Huawei Optimizer app.

Huawei flags this app as a Google trojan
Neither Huawei nor Google has responded to the Google trojan bug yet

What should Huawei phone users do?

Huawei phone users should make sure that they have the latest version of the Optimizer app installed on their devices. They can check for updates by going to the AppGallery and searching for "Optimizer".

Users should also make sure that they have the latest version of the Google app installed on their devices. They can check for updates by going to the Google Play Store and searching for "Google".

Perhaps a remnant of the past

This, of course, reminds us of Huawei's relationship with Google. Huawei's ban from the US market is a complex issue with a number of different factors at play. One of the key factors is the US government's concern that Huawei's equipment could be used by the Chinese government for espionage.

Huawei has denied these allegations, but the US government has remained unconvinced. In 2019, the US government added Huawei to its Entity List, which effectively bans US companies from doing business with Huawei.

This ban has had a significant impact on Huawei's business, particularly its smartphone division. Huawei has been unable to access US technology and components, which has made it difficult to develop and manufacture new smartphones.

It's not a good idea to look for ulterior motives, and given that the two companies haven't worked together for a long time, the Google trojan bug was most likely not "intentional". But when has the tech world ever said no to a little drama?


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  1. Miguel said on October 30, 2023 at 12:09 pm

    Apps by Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple, Twitter, etal… are, in fact, malware. They are state-approved malware. Privacy disrespecting, data-hording, surveillance warez that should all be tagged as malware as a PSA to all users.

    The tech-savvy among us work with this knowledge everyday. We just often don’t have a choice. Reminding users that their apps are malware is a requirement of any good malware detector. Let the users be informed on a daily basis.

    I dislike very much that these state-approved, multi-billion dollar companies get a free pass.

    Thank you Huawei. Your optimizer will get “fixed” eventually but for a moment there… it was honest with us about this particular app, at least.

    1. aoa said on October 31, 2023 at 5:09 am

      i dont think you know what malware is lol. you guys literally dont know anything but parrot these things around like you know some insider truths. but i get it, the cool thing is to hate on anything successful correct? hey i hope you dont ever have to make a significant amount of money that would suck i guess

    2. Haakon said on October 30, 2023 at 6:44 pm

      One doesn’t have to create and log in to an account to run Windows. One can run multiple layers of third-party security products to manipulate several OSI layers for security/privacy. Running any of those “etals” are choices. And the intuhwebz is a public space, so, what privacy??

      I can agree that critical assessments should be directed at the “state-approved, multi-billion dollar companies” forcing us to have google or apple accounts to use ALL the marvelous mobile tech and _at_their_discretion_. But that’s policy, not malware.

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