Android phones have a vulnerability which allows a remote attacker to take control of the phone. It has been covered on multiple tech and regular news outlets.
Android is the most popular mobile operating system on Earth: About 80 percent of smartphones run on it. And, according to mobile security experts at the firm Zimperium, there’s a gaping hole in the software — one that would let hackers break into someone’s phone and take over, just by knowing the phone’s number.
In this attack, the target would not need to goof up — open an attachment or download a file that’s corrupt. The malicious code would take over instantly, the moment you receive a text message…
Here’s how the attack would work: The bad guy creates a short video, hides the malware inside it and texts it to your number. As soon as it’s received by the phone, Drake says, “it does its initial processing, which triggers the vulnerability.”
The team at Google have issued a patch for this vulnerability. However reality is that most Android patches don’t make it to existing smartphone owners quick enough. They first have to be dealt with by the manufacturers of the phones (of which there are many) and then by telco services providers as well. Both of which don’t happen fast enough – resulting in million’s of Android devices being vulnerable.
If you are an Apple user, the good news is that this scenario won’t happen to you, because Apple has controlled the relationship with the telcos and has the ability to push updates to iOS devices themselves. No need for the telco to get involved and Apple makes the hardware, so no manufacturers to deal with.