Google is once again tightening the access of applications to accessibility services (API AccessibilityService) in Android. This change is explained by the concern for the safety of users to protect them from potentially dangerous programs that can gain complete control over the device.
By accessing the AccessibilityService API, your app can view and directly manipulate content on the screen, as well as perform actions on behalf of the user. In other words, the program acquires full control over the device. First of all, it is intended for people with disabilities. For example, Google’s TalkBack app is used to read text on the screen, which is useful for people with vision problems. However, this opportunity can also be used by intruders.
To protect users from scammers, Google has decided to restrict access to the AccessibilityService API to applications downloaded from unreliable sources. In other words, this does not apply to programs downloaded from Google Play, F-Droid and other official app stores. The change will take effect starting with Android 13.
Earlier, Google announced that from May 11 it restricts access to the AccessibilityService API to third-party applications for recording telephone conversations.