Diogo Ferreira’s Penetrate, the wifi cracking app I covered a year ago, was just yanked from the Android Market by Google as he confirmed on Twitter to the dismay of many, myself included as this software was a net contribution, offering network admins a tool to test the security of their network, a means to put pressure on the makers of various vulnerable routers to step their game up and a great example to illustrate just how “open” Google is with respect to keeping their distance from gray area judgment calls.
As, unlike other apps Google that have removed from the market, this isn’t malware or just bad software (Diogo’s chasing a PhD and is a CyanogenMOD dev), and since they let it slide for over a year, it’s a sign that Google is clamping down on what used to be a more laissez faire approach aligning them further with Apple.
As a gesture I have been mirroring his 105MB dictionary file almost from the start. Right now, even though it’s off the market, thirty people are connected to my server with a download of the file in progress (normally it’s around five), spiking toward 30mbps. A dictionary file bank run. And now it’s going to be blogged about, the news spreading further, the pulling of the software may result in greater popularity of it, maybe a spot on the Amazon market and unless Google offers me a job in exchange I’ll keep hosting whatever he needs and so will others. Hard to articulate what was gained by their removing it but Diogo may forward an explanation, a statement rather, shortly.