Thanks to one of you for highlighting this to us, we were notified earlier today about the issue whereby the MIUI’s Themes app is now flagged as “harmful” by Google Play Protect. No one knows why as of the time of this publication.
We’ve asked a few friends to verify if this is happening to their device – and sure enough, it is. From what we know now, all Xiaomi, Redmi, and Poco devices are having this issue.
Weirdly enough though, the Black Shark 5 Pro does not. Maybe it’s because Black Shark devices do not have the latest updates, hence having an older version of the Themes app even though the Black Shark’s Joy UI is based on MIUI.
If you can want to verify if this is happening on your device, head into the Google Play Store, tap on your profile, and click on Play Protect. Then, click “scan now”.
By the way, do not click “disable” just yet. If you do, then you cannot change your wallpaper.
Should you be worried?
Probably not. There is a possibility that this could be a false positive on Google Play Protect’s end. It’s not the first time that this has happened, and someone even documented that Google Play Protect’s malware detection capability isn’t that good either.
We have reached out to Xiaomi regarding this issue. However, since it is a Saturday night as of publishing this, we’ll mostly get an answer on Monday. We will update this page when we have more information.
In the meantime, if you are having the same issue on your smartphone, do tell us on our Facebook page by clicking here.
UPDATED – The solution is rather simple
Turns out that all you have to do is just reset your app preference. This dude got a good guide on how to do just that. It’s simple and we also tested that this solution actually works.
UPDATE 2: Official statement from Xiaomi
It’s finally Monday morning, and Xiaomi made an official statement about this issue. Turned out, they haven o idea why this is happening too. They’re investigating with Google to learn more – but that’s all we know for now.
Here is the official statement from Xiaomi.
We are aware of the alert that has come up for our Themes app. This alert is no longer issued and we are working together with Google to identify the cause of this issue.
If you can still see this alert, but have not yet disabled the Themes app, here’s what you can do:
Open Google Play Store and tap your profile photo in the upper right corner of the screen. Select “Play Protect” and open “Settings”. Turn off “Scan apps with Play Protect”. Go back to Play Protect and turn the switch back on. The alert shouldn’t show up after a new scan.
If you have already disabled the Themes app, try the following to restore access:
Tap the menu button in the upper right corner of your screen in Settings > Apps > Manage apps. Select the option that allows you to reset app preferences. Some apps might ask you for permissions after that.
If you aren’t using App drawer, you’ll see the app on your Home screen. Otherwise, it will show up in App drawer.