Android is an operating system for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers. Questions tagged [Android] should focus on security of the operating system itself, or of Android specific apps

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2answers
4k views

How do anti-virus apps for Android work?

There seems to be a lot of anti-virus apps for Android. On a desktop or server an anti-virus must run with super-user privileges, however I am pretty sure these mobile anti-viruses are running as an ...
9
votes
4answers
3k views

Securely erase personal data from android phone before selling

I have just sold online my old Nexus 5 (Android Lolipop) and need to post it tomorrow morning. I would like to make sure the new owner can't access my files. What should I do?
31
votes
7answers
4k views

Best practices for securing an android device

Does anyone have any suggestions on securing an Android device? I'm not particularly interested in enterprise level software - I'm looking to secure my own ZTE Blade phone which has a lot of personal ...
52
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2answers
12k views

How exactly does the Stagefright Vulnerability work on Android?

Digital Trends describes the Stagefright Vulnerability thus: The exploit in question happens when a hacker sends a MMS message containing a video that includes malware code. What’s most alarming ...
40
votes
2answers
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What is the difference between serial number and thumbprint?

I have problems to understand what is the difference between the serial number of a certificate and its SHA1 hash. The MSDN says: Serial number A number that uniquely identifies the ...
15
votes
4answers
4k views

What risk does Carrier IQ pose, exactly?

There has been a lot of discussion about Carrier IQ, monitoring software that is pre-installed on many Android phones. Many allegations have been thrown out. My questions: What exactly does Carrier ...
15
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5answers
3k views

Android API/development security pitfalls

What are the most important security issues that developers of Android apps need to know about? What are the biggest pitfalls or kinds of vulnerabilities that they need to watch out for? One ...
64
votes
7answers
85k views

Are there actually any advantages to Android full-disk encryption?

So, since Android 3, devices can perform boot-time, on-the-fly encryption/decryption of the application storage area (NOT the SDcard/removable storage) - essentially full-disk encryption. This ...
11
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3answers
4k views

iOS/Android Pen-Test

This question might be vague, that is because I am not sure where to start. There are a lot of books and courses on pentest focusing on networks, systems, and OS such as windows, yet I haven't been ...
7
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3answers
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Android/iOS application security testing checklist

According to OWASP, we have a list of top ten mobile application vulnerabilities. But we are damn sure that the number of vulnerabilities on mobile apps, especially android apps are far more than ...
22
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2answers
77k views

Can Android phone running without SIM card be tracked (localized) by police?

I am running an Android phone without a SIM card. I am using it for web surfing. Can the police localize my phone using the cell towers (BTS)? In other words, I know Android phones emit radiations ...
33
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I verify HTTPS connections in Mobile apps?

There are a lot of mobile apps nowadays with payment gateways support. However, unlike desktop browsers, these mobile apps do not show us an 'Address bar' by which we can identify a HTTPS connection. ...
9
votes
4answers
7k views

Any useful tools for Android source code review? [closed]

I'm wondering if anyone has some recommendations for Android source code review which is Java based. For example, reviewing an Android app for security issues. Bonus for being F/OSS. Fortify seems ...
14
votes
4answers
12k views

Is Android's Password Screen Lock Enough Data Theft Protection?

With the exception of the SD card data, is Android's built-in password/pin/pattern screen lock enough to protect data stored in your phone's internal storage in case of theft? Or can a thief simply by-...
11
votes
1answer
262 views

How does a refresh token help? [duplicate]

I have a basic doubt or apparently am missing out on something fundamental. When talking about an Android app that talks to the backend using APIs, the access to the resources/APIs are protected ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Can someone detect the URL an android app uses?

I have an android app that makes HTTPS connection to specific URL. Is there a way to keep this URL secret? I know that the IP address and the port number of that connection can be detected, but what ...
7
votes
2answers
137 views

How much can I trust the “factory restore/reset” on a(n) (potentially compromised) android?

This question is a simple one: how much can you trust the "factory restore/reset" option on an android device? If the device has possibly been compromised, is it possible the "factory reset" will ...
6
votes
3answers
15k views

Which type of encryption algorithms android supports, and which would be better?

I read this documentation, and I have written an algo to encrypt and decrypt a string. But I don't know how many types of algorithms android supports. Regarding DES and AES (As wiki documentation) ...
11
votes
2answers
169 views

Does Centralisation Decrease the Probability but Increase the Damage of Exploits?

This question is, perhaps, a tad too abstract for a Q&A site. But it's been playing on my mind for a while, so I'm throwing it out there. Modern systems seem to be increasingly centralised. An ...
4
votes
2answers
981 views

How secure is the private storage of a mobile app

Are there any know security flaws/hacks to gain access to the private storage(file system or SQLite database) of Android and iOS applications? What measures do Google and Apple take to "prevent" ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

How to determine if it is safe to install apk files from alternative android app stores?

Several sites offer APK downloads (1, 2, 3). Is there a way to determine if a given website/apk is safe to install?
49
votes
6answers
10k views

Am I at risk if I let someone charge their Android phone from my MacBook through a micro USB cable?

Someone connected their Android phone to my MacBook and it made me think if this has put my MacBook at risk. It was for 3 seconds and I was in control of the MacBook the whole time.
7
votes
1answer
11k views

Encrypting data for Android mobile app

I am creating a mobile app for Android. This is my first mobile app by the way. I have decided to store data used in my app in a SQLite database in the target Android device. The data I am storing ...
11
votes
1answer
6k views

Android Runtime Code Injection

I'm doing research for a static analysis tool to help detect malware in Android applications. I'm wondering if it is possible to perform code injection on Android without using a class loader. I ...
19
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3answers
18k views

Does Android encryption really prevent law enforcement access?

Google recently announced that in Android L encryption would be turned on by default: For over three years Android has offered encryption, and keys are not stored off of the device, so they ...
10
votes
2answers
5k views

How can I prevent a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack on my Android app API?

I checked out the app Packet Capture. This app is able to decrypt my app APIs (SSL Enabled) data by mounting a MITM attack using the Android VPN service. This does not even require root. How can I ...
13
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4answers
4k views

How can I make sure password hashing is secure on computers while not being prohibitively slow on mobile devices?

I'm new to cryptography and its implementations. I'm designing an Android app where an user enters a password to retrieve some encrypted data. After some research on possible solutions I ended up with ...
12
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2answers
9k views

Android L encryption vs. iOS 8 encryption

Recently, the new full-disk encryption system of Apple's iOS 8 operating system has been in the news. And soon after Apple's release, Google announced that they will also enable encryption by default ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there cryptographic material in a phone's SIM card that can be used with RSA encryption?

Given that a smart card stores a private key that can't be extracted, it appears that a SIM card is similar to a smart card in these respects. I need to store (or use an existing) private key on a ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

Android / CyanogenMod encryption vs GNU/Linux

Hi I am trying to understand how encrypting an Android based phone works compared to a GNU/Linux host which relies on LUKS dm-crypt. Here is what I understand: Encrypted LVM on GNU/Linux is an ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Intercepting SSL traffic on Android app

I am trying to intercept SSL traffic from my Android app to test the security. I am using certificate pinning in the hopes I can prevent people from snooping. I have tested by configuring ProxyDroid ...
2
votes
2answers
234 views

Determining safety of Android APK executable that requires root

On my request, a developer gave me a new version of his Android app to test. The app requires root permissions. I do not know the developer personally. I have no specific reasons to trust or ...
18
votes
3answers
603 views

Android security without updates

I have an android phone which, like many others, has quickly become unsupported and is not receiving any updates. At the same time there are publicly available exploits for privilege-escalation ...
10
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1answer
5k views

Android Device Encryption

I am trying to understand when using the default android device encryption in 4.0.4 ICS (AES-CBC 128Bit) how the Key Derivation Function works? That is how is the users decryption passcode transformed ...
4
votes
1answer
398 views

Data remanence on mobile devices

The methods in which data should be deleted is strictly enforced by the DoD as well as others security sensitive organizations. However, there are complications with deleting data on an SSD. Given ...
1
vote
3answers
183 views

Storing API tokens safely on Android to identify developer

We're building an Android library for our Rest APIs that app developers will access with a unique token. Since it's a paid service, and it's a per-request or per-install pricing model, how do we ...
1
vote
3answers
8k views

Does rooting an Android Phone make it Vulnerable? [closed]

If android os in a device is rooted , will it be safe to use it in public networks where possibilities of attacks is more.
10
votes
1answer
89k views

Can the Gmail password be recovered from the Android Gmail app?

I have an Android device with the Gmail app installed. This app can access the mailbox so there must be some kind of authentication data stored on the device (possibly an application specific password?...
6
votes
2answers
261 views

Is there an equivalent of an Apple cryptochip in Android devices?

Apple has a cryptochip which, beside managing the encryption keys, tunnels authentication and provides throttling of failed attempts, as well as the ability to trigger a device wipe after several ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

How secure could the LastPass Android application be with a four-digit PIN?

I use LastPass for Android with the PIN option. After having entered my full Lastpass password the first time that I used the app, now when opening the application I have access to all my passwords ...
5
votes
1answer
323 views

Android, how to protect in case of theft

What are some steps to take into account to protect an Android phone in case of theft? Smartphones are everywhere now, before the market was dominated by Blackberry and Windows Mobile. These days ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Are phone apps vulnerable to XSS or CSRF? (Webview, Phonegap, chrometab)

I need to provide evidence that CSRF or XSS is possible on a phone... using PhoneGap, a Webview, or specifically a "Chrome Tab" or iOS equivalent. I believe in theory this is possible, and mitigation ...
4
votes
1answer
323 views

Do modern Android devices provide access to their Secure Elelement in some way?

I'd like to know if latest generation Android devices provide an application with access to their Secure Element in some way (other than by way of the NFC interface, which is #1 application of the SE),...
4
votes
2answers
790 views

Is Google API Key a sensitive information that needs to be protected?

I'm making use of google API for location (in Android, iOS apps).. Can the key be hardcoded? Or should it be protected? If It's sensitive, why is it sensitive and how can attackers exploit this?
3
votes
3answers
445 views

Bypass app permissions

I'm annoyed and actually scared by all the permissions that I have to grant the applications that is running on my Android phone. Is there is a way to bypass them ? Let's say my microphone. My ...
2
votes
1answer
219 views

Why Google and smartphone manufacturers don't care about updates?

For Windows, Firefox/Chrome, Java, Flash critical updates are issued each couple weeks, and as far my understanding goes, it is REALLY bad not to install them ASAP. For my 3 year old Samsung ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Fuzzing Android API

I am thinking of trying to make an Android API fuzzer (I never made a fuzzer before, but I understand the concepts), and I was wondering which API calls would be the most interesting ones to fuzz from ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

How does Android filesystem encryption work?

I'm interested in encrypting my Android devices for security in the (hopefully will-never-happen) event of the phone being recovered by an unknown/unauthorized person. How does Android filesystem ...
8
votes
1answer
4k views

How to select /dev/random or dev/urandom in the code in Android?

When generating randomness using SecureRandom in Android, I want to select /dev/random or /dev/urandom as the seed source. It can be done in java.security file on Linux and Windows systems but there's ...
3
votes
2answers
248 views

Is android's FDE secure from offline attacks?

Android provides FDE, but it uses lockscreen pin, which is (at least in my case) fairly weak (like a 4-digit PIN). Does it mean that my FDE could be easily broken by offline attack? Or maybe master ...