Claims Of Android Phone Makers On Latest Patches Are Falling Apart

Google might split Android security patches to deliver fast updates

Google might split Android security patches to deliver fast updates

The Berlin-based team found that many Android phone manufacturers were far behind on updates, or even lying about the last security update applied to the phone. The problem with Android is that while Google may push out regular software updates, it is left to these manufacturers to push them out to their devices.

Numerous Android manufacturers have been lying to consumers about security patches they have failed to roll out, according to a new report from Security Research Labs (SRL).

That's according to a two-year-long study by Security Research Labs (SRL), finding a so-called "patch gap", Wired reports. "Our large study of Android phones finds that most Android vendors regularly forget to include some patches, leaving parts of the ecosystem exposed to the underlying risks". These OEMs have just been changing the date of the security patches on the device without actually installing the associated patches an have been misleading their users. Google Pixel devices, on the other hand, didn't skip on any update and were the only devices to be on that list which were immune to this issue. HTC, Huawei, LG, and Motorola had between three and four missed patches, with few HTC samples available. Some smartphones, meanwhile, may be skipping patches because their contents may be for features not offered by the devices. "Sometimes these guys just change the date without installing any patches". Google's phones seem to be safe, however, as the Pixel and Pixel 2 series did not misrepresent what security patches they had.

SRL tested 1,200 devices from over a dozen Android smartphone makers and found that Google smartphones were the only ones that contained all the security patches that were advertized in software updates released in 2017. Despite Google's constant effort most of the vendors tend to skip on the occasional security patch for their devices and a lot of them are specific to the mid-range devices. Meanwhile companies like Nokia, OnePlus and Xiaomi were missing 1-3 patches on average.

"Android has had its difficulties with patching in the past, with only 17 percent of devices operating on a recent patch level in 2016", the researchers wrote.

Читайте также: How Jio 4G laptops could revive the Indian PC market

Android P will allow cleartext connections to specific domains, but Google said developers should use these only for legacy cases to avoid traffic being tampered with.

One measure of security a user has when using an Android device is when you get the monthly security patches from Google.

Android has typically been more vulnerable to attack that Apple's iOS platform, however Google has pumped a huge amount of resources into tackling security protection on its devices.

SRL has updated its SnoopSnitch Android security app to detect whether a phone has missed security updates. "These layers of security-combined with the tremendous diversity of the Android ecosystem-contribute to the researchers' conclusions that remote exploitation of Android devices remains challenging".

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