IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering

IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering (TKDE) is an archival journal published monthly designed to inform researchers, developers, managers, strategic planners, users, and others interested in state-of-the-art and state-of-the-practice activities in the knowledge and data engineering area. Read the full scope of TKDE


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From the June 2017 issue

Search Rank Fraud and Malware Detection in Google Play

By Mahmudur Rahman, Mizanur Rahman, Bogdan Carbunar, and Duen Horng Chau

Featured ArticleFraudulent behaviors in Google Play, the most popular Android app market, fuel search rank abuse and malware proliferation. To identify malware, previous work has focused on app executable and permission analysis. In this paper, we introduce FairPlay, a novel system that discovers and leverages traces left behind by fraudsters, to detect both malware and apps subjected to search rank fraud. FairPlay correlates review activities and uniquely combines detected review relations with linguistic and behavioral signals gleaned from Google Play app data (87 K apps, 2.9 M reviews, and 2.4M reviewers, collected over half a year), in order to identify suspicious apps. FairPlay achieves over 95 percent accuracy in classifying gold standard datasets of malware, fraudulent and legitimate apps. We show that 75 percent of the identified malware apps engage in search rank fraud. FairPlay discovers hundreds of fraudulent apps that currently evade Google Bouncer's detection technology. FairPlay also helped the discovery of more than 1,000 reviews, reported for 193 apps, that reveal a new type of “coercive” review campaign: users are harassed into writing positive reviews, and install and review other apps.

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Editorials and Announcements

Announcements

  • We are pleased to announce that Xuemin Lin, a Scientia Professor in the School of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of New South Wales, Australia, has been named the new Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering starting in 2017.

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  • TKDE celebrates its 25th Anniversary. Editor-in-Chief Jian Pei says, "We are celebrating the 25th Anniversary of TKDE. Since its first issue in March 1989, TKDE has published 2,981 articles, and another 220 articles in the early access portal. With 898 submissions and 79 accepted articles in 2012, TKDE is now the premier journal in the broad and general fields of data management, data mining, and knowledge engineering. We thank all the authors, reviewers, and readers for their continuing support to TKDE. As always, we are eager to hear your ideas and suggestions, and will do our best to meet your expectations. With all your passions, contributions, and supports, TKDE is embracing the new era of big data and big data analytics. Happy birthday to TKDE!"


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