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Wannabe Geek


Topic # 125749 18-Jul-2013 12:00
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Hi, I overheard someone mention all Android phones (apart for some recent models) have an error in the software and we need to contact the supplier to have them fixed as they are subject to viruses.

Anyone else heard of this?

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  Reply # 858557 18-Jul-2013 12:07
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It's a vulnerability which allows a malicious install package to install a modified apk of a system application without the phone knowing it's modified.

But to do that you would have to install a malicious, modified package in the first place.

If you use Google Play store for example, chances are very slim of the vulnerability being exploited, especially since they're scanning all the apps now.

I could link to articles but it's easy enough to search for "android vulnerability", also they're generally quite technical and probably not that meaningful to the average user.

In reality, it's a bad flaw that shouldn't be there, but it's really not as easy to exploit (in the real world) as the security researchers who found it are making it out to be.  And your chances of getting any official patch for an old phone from any manufacturer are, in my opinion, slim to none.

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  Reply # 858558 18-Jul-2013 12:09
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This is really a non-issue. It is possible for an application to be compromised by someone and retain its original signature.

If you only install apps from Google Play then you really don't need to worry about it. If you sideload apps you obtain from dodgy 3rd party sites then there is a risk. But there always has been a risk in doing that.

The only place I'd get apps from outside the Google or Amazon stores is Xda Developers.

A little common sense will protect you.

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  Reply # 858615 18-Jul-2013 13:44
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Use cyanogenmod 10.1 and if it is a recent build, it will have the fix built in to it. Otherwise I just saw Modaco have an app called rekey for root users which can protect against the vulnerabily apparently.
http://www.modaco.com/page/news/_/android/protect-against-the-master-key-vulnerability-with-rekey-r1186
Just don't be stupid and use apps you download off rapidshare and you should be fine.




Try Vultr using this link and get us both some credit:

 

http://www.vultr.com/?ref=7033587-3B


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  Reply # 864875 24-Jul-2013 10:09
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bradstewart: This is really a non-issue. It is possible for an application to be compromised by someone and retain its original signature.

If you only install apps from Google Play then you really don't need to worry about it. If you sideload apps you obtain from dodgy 3rd party sites then there is a risk. But there always has been a risk in doing that.


Exactly. Just don't download apps from sites, only from the Google Play Market. Symantec has now identified the first implementations of this happening with cracked apps out there.




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