XDA News Articles

Jimmy McGee · Jul 25, 2013

Secure Your Android Device with Master Key Dual Fix – XDA Developer TV

Whether you want to admit it or not, Android is not always as secure as it could be. But thankfully, good people find the security flaws and report them. Google then patches the vulnerabilities. Then, we hit a roadblock. If you are on a stock ROM, you usually have to wait for your carrier to roll out an update for your device to get the patch. Since rolling out updates doesn’t lead to new phone sales, some carriers don’t offer...

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Jimmy McGee · Jul 19, 2013

Android 4.3 for Nexus 4 Leaked, Virtual PC Steering Wheel for Android Available – XDA Developer TV

Android 4.3 leaked for the Google Nexus 4 That and more are covered by Jordan, as he reviews all the important stories from this week. Included in this week's news is an article using your Android device as a Virtual driving game wheel and news about an Xposed Patch for the two recent Master Key-style Android vulnerabilities Jordan talks about the other videos released this week on XDA Developer TV. XDA Developer TV Producer Kevin released a video talking about Xprivacy to protect...

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Will Verduzco · Jul 18, 2013

Xposed Patch for Master Key and Bug 9695860 Vulnerabilities

By now, you've undoubtedly heard of the Android Master Key vulnerability, which allows a malicious payload to be inserted in an application that is installed, due to a discrepancy between signature verification and app installation. The vulnerability has been known for some time, having been responsibly disclosed by Bluebox back in February, and patched a couple of weeks ago. Another vulnerability, also known officially as Bug 9695860, works in a similar fashion and results in the installation of an unwanted malicious...

XDA NEWS
Samantha · Jul 13, 2013

Telstra Giving FBI Access to Australian Calls, Emails, and Online Messages

Looks like even we Australians haven't been able to stay clear from the unprecedented, mass surveillance that Americans have been subjected to, as The Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) has revealed today. It may or may not come as a shock that Australia's largest telecommunications company Telstra has had a secret pact with the US intelligence agencies for at least a decade, obliging Telstra to store mass volumes of communication data of Australians for potential investigations by the US in the future....

XDA NEWS
Pulser_G2 · Jul 11, 2013

Heml.is – This Just Isn’t Security

In light of all the recent panic over surveillance and Internet monitoring, there are a plethora of "secure" communication programs being announced and launched. These tend to make bold promises of being secure, protecting users from surveillance, and being better than equivalent services. Yesterday, 3 notable personalities in the web-o-sphere lost much credibility in my (and anyone interested in security's) view. Why? For using pseudo-security, and trying to market it as security. They clearly do not have a strong background...

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Jimmy McGee · Jun 25, 2013

Elite Recognized Developer Jcase to Talk Android Security at XDA:DevCon 2013

At XDA, we get downright giddy when we see a heavily locked down device unlocked and rooted. An unlocked bootloader and rooted device opens the door for many options of custom ROMs. Without root we have no recovery, no ROMs, no kernel optimizations, and very limited other development. Most of us are guilty of just flashing away what greater minds say we need to without ever understanding what they do. Justin Case, aka XDA Elite Recognized Developer jcase, is a...

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Jimmy McGee · Jun 13, 2013

Android App Review: Say Hello to Security with Hi App Lock – XDA Developer TV

With the citizens of the United States debating the Orwellian state of citizen surveillance, security is a hot topic. Perhaps it is a good idea to protect yourself from spying a bit more. Grab a piece of tin foil and fashion a hat, lock your phone, and talk only in short syllables. XDA Forum Member hiapp has an application to block access to your applications.  In this video, XDA Developer TV Producer TK reviews Hi App Lock. TK shows off the...

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Pulser_G2 · Jun 11, 2013

Secure Encryption–An (Oxy)moronic Attempt by Apple?

In case you are someone like I am who doesn't follow the annual "update" of iOS, this is where they make it more like Android and make use of some features Android has had for years (i.e. notification pull-down), and announce a few changes and "new" things the rest of the world has done for years. Before I go any further, the previous sentence is intended as a joke, let's not turn this into an iOS vs whatever war. This...

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Pulser_G2 · Jun 8, 2013

Android Permissions: Permissively Insecure?

Android, as an operating system, is fairly unique in that it makes users aware of the permissions available to apps in a fairly transparent way. Compared to Blackberry or iOS, which issue granular prompts such as "Can Angry Birds access your location?" or "Can Instagram access your camera to take photos?" There is a somewhat subtle difference here: The rivals give the user a choice about these requests. Jump over to Android where, after installing an app, it has free...

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Pulser_G2 · Jun 6, 2013

[BREAKING] “Top Secret” Court Order Forces Verizon to Hand Over Call Data

The UK newspaper The Guardian has revealed today that US CDMA telecommunications provider Verizon is secretly collecting and disclosing the telephone records of a huge number of subscribers (likely in the order of tens of millions of Americans) to USA's National Security Agency (NSA), often cynically referred to as "Never Say Anything." This classified, top secret court order, whose classification does not expire until April 2038, compels Verizon to provide, and continue to provide on an ongoing basis: [...] an...

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Pulser_G2 · Jun 5, 2013

Say Sayonara to Google Contacts Sync – Introducing OwnCloud

Welcome to Part 2 of our Say Sayonara to Google series, raising awareness of the options for using Android without Google services. Today, we look at alternative "cloud" services that are Open Source and can be installed on your own server. While there are no doubt many of these available, one that has gained significant attention recently is OwnCloud. OwnCloud is developed totally in the open (you can even clone and run directly from their Github repositories if you so desire,...

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Mike Szczys · Jun 4, 2013

Sound-Triggered Malware Could Rickroll Rooms Full of Infected Androids

How do you know if your handset is infected with malware? You might not be able to tell until after it's triggered. And this particular trigger method is very interesting. You know how Google Now listens for you to say the word "Google" to initiate a voice search? Malware might know the same trick. An infected device could be just waiting to hear the right thing before taking action. This white paper (PDF) from a group of student researchers envisions an...

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Pulser_G2 · Jun 3, 2013

Say Sayonara to Google Apps

What is freedom? This is a big question being asked by people around the world over the past few years. Many of us believe (and often rightly so) that we are fairly free. Arguably, this is correct in many countries throughout the world. You have political freedoms and many many more. But do you have electronic freedom? For almost everyone reading this article, it is likely you have a Google Account. This means you have a Gmail account. It's tied...

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Samantha · Jun 2, 2013

Keep Your Phone Safe from Prying Eyes

Let's be honest; our phones are probably some of the most personal objects we have. From the memories captured with the camera to the hour-long text conversations, from the bank and credit card details stored within the apps to even our calendars; the consequences of a lost phone or a phone in stranger's hands would be devastating. So in addition to the password protected lock screen, you may want to add an extra layer of security with HI App Lock....

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Pulser_G2 · May 26, 2013

Compromised Sky Apps and the Security Aftermath

After our earlier article warning users to uninstall the Sky apps from their devices, it's time to take a look at the technical significance of this attack. Firstly, the attackers have managed to do two key things here, each of which should each be impossibly difficult for the Play Store update system to be secure: Gained access to the Play Store Developer Console of Sky, presumably through gaining access to the associated Google Account Obtained access to, or managed to otherwise...

XDA NEWS
Pulser_G2 · May 26, 2013

Sky UK Apps Compromised on Play Store, Uninstall Them!

Today is Sunday, 26th May, and across the world, many people have woken up following a leisurely lie-in to the small notification of an updated app being available. Nothing unusual there, or so you'd think. The only difference is that today, some of these app updates may well have been malicious updates, pushed to some of the Sky UK official Android apps. As reported by PC Pro and Android Police; the  Sky Go, Sky+, SKY WiFi, and Sky News apps all...

XDA NEWS
Haroon Q. Raja · Jan 11, 2013

Secure Your Android Device with SecDroid

Personal information security has been a prime concern for computer users since nearly the beginning of computing itself. Malicious users find exploits and develop viruses, trojans, and  rootkits to gain control of our devices to use them for their own advantage. This not only costs us in form of degraded performance and potential data usage costs, but can also have more dire consequences such as our financial information being sniffed and used to withdraw money from our accounts, or identity...

XDA NEWS
Former Writer · Jan 4, 2013

PDroid Ported to the Verizon Galaxy S III

It doesn't always make the front pages, but device security is still one of the most important topics for Android users. Whether it's for protection from exploits that can brick a phone or apps that have permissions they really don't need, users and developers are always on the lookout for potentially dangerous applications. One app some use is XDA Forum Member svyat's PDroid, which is now ported to the Verizon Samsung Galaxy S III. XDA Recognized Developer TrevE has released the port for...

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Former Writer · Dec 29, 2012

NFC Secure Beta Makes Standard Lock Screen Security a Relic of the Past

Lock screen security, and Android device security in general, is a frequent topic of conversation. While lock screens are becoming more functional with features such as the now-standard lock screen widgets, security remains about as easy as ever to work around. This is an issue that may be eased with a new app called NFC Secure Beta. XDA Senior Member r2DoesInc has released NFC Secure Beta. What the application does is force users to use a NFC tag to unlock the...

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jerdog · Dec 27, 2012

Open Source App Lets You Control Your Phone over SMS

Security applications are a dime-a-dozen these days. While it normally wouldn't be noteworthy to have a new entry into the fray, this one is different in one very important way: The developer knows none of your information. AeGis, which comes to us from XDA Recognized Developer Decad3nce, is unlike competing applications in that it does not require a data connection, you are not asked to log in to anything, and you do not need to register and pay a large firm a...

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