June 19, 2018

Implementation of the new Android Security Update Process.

A Samsung Electronics Co. Galaxy Note Edge smartphone running the Android mobile operating system is arranged for a photograph in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, July 28, 2015. A researcher at a security firm revealed a hole in Android's source code that hackers can exploit, if they have a phone's number, with a text. Photographer: Chris Goodney/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By Nina Mulamba

 

 

Stage fright flaw has been a bother to a lot of Android users but there’s no need to worry now since a patch will be coming down the line in the next few days.

Due to recent insecurity issues, Android has been working to patch vulnerability, known as Stage fright, which could let hackers access a phone’s data simply by sending somebody a video message.

Samsung has recently fast tracked security updates to its Galaxy devices with the recent Android Stage fright issues working with the carriers and partners. Acknowledging the importance of time sensitivity in addressing major vulnerabilities, the company plans to further develop this process and implement it as a timely security update practice.

“We believe that this new process will vastly improve the security of our devices and will aim to provide the best mobile experience possible for our users.” said Dong Jin Koh, Executive Vice President and Head of Mobile Research and Development Office, IT & Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics.

These updates have been sent out to manufacturers for years, but now end users will get them too, and they will continue for at least three years after the launch of any new handset.

Samsung Electronics have embraced the new security update process and has said that a number of their handsets will get the fix and will regularly be updated once per month.

Did it have to take that long? Well the following were the main reasons:

Manufactures no longer updated phones running on the old versions of Android and  many companies also deploy customized versions of Android therefore taking a lot of time to rebuild with the security changes.

Android is an open source operating system, with the software freely available for phone manufacturers to modify and use on their handsets.

The very nature of Android is that manufacturers add their own software on top, so there have been delays in software roll-outs

The Google-led project does provide security fixes for the software, but phone manufacturers are responsible for sending the updates to their devices.

In some countries like the US, mobile carriers often add their own software too, adding another layer of bureaucracy holding up security fixes.

In addition, other brands such as LG and Google have also pledged to do the same. Developers are also going to be getting warnings if their code is found to break the rules, either inadvertently or by design. So far Google has warned developers about more than 60,000 applications, but in the long run goggle is certain that it will cut to zero.

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