Updated: If you use an Android device and regularly download and install apps from the Google Play Store, you may have noticed that some apps require device admin rights to be disabled before you can “Force stop” or “uninstall” an app. Device admin allows developers to create security-aware apps that are mainly useful for enterprise settings. These settings (or policies as they are referred too) may stop a user from installing or uninstalling an app for example.
I’ve started noticing quite a few Android mobile security apps are employing device admin rights to their consumer apps. The main reason for doing this is that the AV vendors want to lock down their app in the event some malware looks to disable or remove their security app, but it is also to with defining a generic security standard for mobile security app development.
Glancing through developer forums it’s clear to see (and I’m one of these) that not being able to kill an app because it is using up large amounts of CPU or RAM time, isn’t that useful to us end -users. Apps and operating systems do have memory leakage and probably always will from time to time. So, how do you disable device admin rights for a particular app so that you can enable ‘Force stop’; ‘Uninstall’; ‘Clear data’; ‘Clear cache’; and ‘Clear defaults’ from within App Manager? It’s actually very simple folks:
- Click > Settings > Security > Device administrators and TAP the app you want to disable Device admin
- The Device administrator screen will appear > TAP > Deactivate – You will then be asked “Are you sure you want to deactivate Device admin rights? TAP > OK
- Click the BACK icon until you reach > Settings > TAP > Apps and scroll down to the app you disabled Device admin. ‘Force stop’; ‘Uninstall’; ‘Clear data’; ‘Clear cache’ and ‘Clear defaults’ should now be enabled.
This post is relevant to those users running Android Froyo 2.2 to Marshmallow 6.0.1, which is the current version (August 2016). To find out which version you are using Click > Settings and scroll down and click > About phone. You should now be able to check your Android version number.
Safe surfing folks!