backtop


Print 30 comment(s) - last by Lazarus Dark.. on Nov 5 at 6:54 PM


Froyo has a few bugs in it.  (Source: rainab on Flickr)
Many of these bugs could expose private user info, much like recent Apple iPhone bug

Android may be open source, but that doesn't make the popular smartphone operating system invincible to security problems.  Hot on the heels of a recently discovered iOS 4.1 vulnerability that could give malicious users access to a locked iPhone's phone app, messaging app, and more, a plethora of Android vulnerabilities have been identified.

The new Android vulnerabilities were discovered by researchers at security firm Coverity.  In their Coverity Scan Open Source Integrity Report the researchers scoured 61 million lines of open source code, including the Android OS source used in the popular HTC Droid Incredible.  Code from Apache, other Linux kernels, PHP, and Samba were among the 291 open source projects examined and compared to the Android kernel.

The team identified 359 bugs in the code.  Of these, 88 of them (roughly 25 percent) were categorized as "high risk" -- bugs that could endanger users' privacy.

Coverity gave Android mixed praise for the quality of its code.  It said that Android had a lower density of bugs per thousand lines of code than average open source software.  But it said it had a higher bug density than the highly scrutinized Linux kernel and that some of the critical bugs should have been caught before release.

While every Android distribution is slightly different, even for the same operating system number, it is thought that these vulnerabilities likely appear in most Froyo-equipped Android phones.

Google has responded quickly to Coverity, reportedly preparing over-the-air fixes that will be delivered by January at the latest.  Coverity is holding off on releasing details of the vulnerabilities until those fixes are delivered.  Over-the-air fixes are one reason some security experts say Android's security is superior to that of the Apple iPhone (iOS does not have over-the-air OS updates).

Google now has something in common with Microsoft -- as the market leader in a major OS segment, it is the highest profile target for exploitation.  Google owns nearly half of the U.S. smartphone market, while RIM and Apple each have roughly a quarter of the market.



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Endless Beta Syndrom
By uhgotnegum on 11/4/2010 6:37:49 PM , Rating: 2
Not one to post a sarcastic, attention-seeking (oh, and "primarily substanceless")comment and never return to see whether the DailyTech public likes me, I am back! I'm switching gears, though, and posting a real comment...now that nobody will ever come back to this article.

I understand and agree with your "beta quality" point re early Android, but I really can't think of other examples. As someone who uses a majority of Google's web, software, and recent Android offerings, I have not really had any "beta quality" experiences. I have had some glitches and "oh, they should've included that"s, but no more than I would expect from any other software or web service.

I'm curious, what experience(s) got you to your opinion?

The only (meaningful) point of my original comment is that I think Apple and Google have very different ideas as to how "beta" is defined and how that phase is implemented in their business models. Personally, I prefer Google's, which seems more agile...more able to address issues that arise in reports like the one from this article. Apple seems to rely on itself, internally, to identify and resolve problems, and a report like this would be reviewed, worked on internally, and then released as part of a "big" update.

If I'm right, it makes sense, b/c part of Apple's revenue is based on selling their new software, whereas Google's revenue is based on your use of the software.

...ok, enough of me.


RE: Endless Beta Syndrom
By NanoTube1 on 11/4/2010 8:01:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Not one to post a sarcastic, attention-seeking (oh, and "primarily substanceless")comment and never return to see whether the DailyTech public likes me, I am back! I'm switching gears, though, and posting a real comment...now that nobody will ever come back to this article.


My my, you built yourself a small conspiracy story over there! Awww... how sweet.

As for Google and their beta software, well, I had many issues with GMail when it was beta, first versions of Android were pretty rough (88 high risk security issues in v2.2 is not exactly nice either), Mmmmmm let's see.... Wave? Buzz?... beta is not only bugs, beta is also when you don't think through the UI or Privacy or any other issue that influences the user.

I think it was one of their founders that said something like "we throw a lot of thing at the wall and see if it sticks"... well, how good is version 1.x of such software can be? inherently beta grade, which it is.


"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki