December 2021 Android security updates now rolling out to select Pixel phones

December 2021 Android security updates now rolling out to select Pixel phones

We’re now in the final stretch of 2021, with the holiday season in full swing, and now Google has a gift for anyone using an Android device. The latest Android security patch is now available, and while it should start arriving on third-party devices soon, it’s rolling out now to select Pixel phones. This is the second security update to arrive for Android 12, and the Google Pixel 6 series will be getting it a week later alongside this month’s Pixel feature drop.

December 2021 Android Security Update Bulletin

The December 2021 Android Security Bulletin can be viewed here, and it outlines a total of 18 vulnerabilities in the Android Framework and system components and a total of 30 vulnerabilities in the kernel and vendor components. The CVE numbers, type of vulnerability, threat severity, and affected OS version/component are listed in the tables published by Google. Nearly all of the vulnerabilities in the Android Framework and system components have been addressed with the security update to the 2021-12-05 patch level, while the vulnerabilities in the kernel and closed-source vendor components have been addressed with the 2021-12-05 patch level, except for one kernel component fix. For more information on how the monthly Android security update process works, we recommend reading our explainer available here.

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Pixel Update Bulletin/Functional Update

The December security update with patch level 2021-12-05 is rolling out for the Pixel 3a series, Pixel 4 series, Pixel 4a series, Pixel 5, Pixel 5a, and will soon be released for the Pixel 6 series. The Pixel-specific update addresses a few additional vulnerabilities in the kernel, Pixel software, and both open and closed-source Qualcomm components, the details of which can be viewed here.

  • Global:
    • Pixel 3a (XL): SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 4 (XL): SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 4a: SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 4a (5G): SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 5: SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 5a (5G): SQ1A.211205.008
    • Pixel 6: N/A
    • Pixel 6 Pro: N/A
  • VzW & VzW MVNOs
    • Pixel 3a (XL): N/A
    • Pixel 4 (XL): N/A
    • Pixel 4a: N/A
    • Pixel 4a (5G): N/A
    • Pixel 5: N/A
    • Pixel 5a (5G): N/A
    • Pixel 6: N/A
    • Pixel 6 Pro: N/A
  • Telstra, Optus, Vodafone AU
    • Pixel 4 (XL): N/A
    • Pixel 4a: N/A
    • Pixel 4a (5G): N/A
    • Pixel 5: N/A

If you don’t want to wait for Google to push the update to you, you can manually flash it to your device using either the OTA files (if you’re on the previous update already) or the factory images (if you’re behind on updates, or want to switch back to the stock ROM). The links to both options are below. We’ll be sure to update this article with more build numbers as we get them.

Pixel Factory Images | Pixel OTA Images

This article was written with additional input from Corbin Davenport

About author

Adam Conway
Adam Conway

I'm the senior technical editor at XDA-Developers. I have a BSc in Computer Science from University College Dublin, and I'm a lover of smartphones, cybersecurity, and Counter-Strike. You can contact me at [email protected] My Twitter is @AdamConwayIE and my Instagram is adamc.99.

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