Samsung devices exposed to Android exploit


Security experts are cautioning consumers and enterprise users of Samsung smartphones and tablets following reports that a fault in the devices’ Android kernel could allow a virus to gain control of the machine.

According to a report in Network World U.S., a post on the XDA Developers web site from a developer called Chainfire says that Samsung users “should be very afraid of this exploit … Any app can use it to gain root without asking and without any permissions on a vulnerable device.

He said the affected devices include Versions of Samsung’s S2 and S3 mobile phones, the Galaxy Note and Galaxy Note II, Galaxy Note Plus and Galaxy Note 101.

Last Saturday, another XDA Developers user named alephzain reported the vulnerability in the online forum saying the fault affects devices using the Exynos processor models 4210 and 4412.

Over the past year many CIOs have witnessed the IT environments dramatically altered by the inclusion into the corporate network of employee-bought mobile devices.

Although Apple’s iPhones and iPads remain the popular mobile device choices of the BYOD (bring your own device) set, Android-based machines such as Samsung smartphones and Galaxy tablets are increasingly becoming.

Security issues, however, remain a critical concern for administrators dealing with the BYOD phenomena. For instance, a report early this year by Decisive Analytics indicated that a survey of 440 CEO and IT executives across North America, the United Kingdom and Germany found that nearly half of those companies that permitted BYOD practices also suffered security breaches.

The increasing popularity of the Android operating system has also made the OS a target of hackers who create seemingly benign applications which in reality contain code that can steal data from a device of make it perform malicious actions.

In response to this, Google has implemented an automated scanner in its Play app marketplace which detects malicious applications.


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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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