360 Mobile Safe Protecting Android Users From "Pileup Flaws"

By: | April 9, 2014 (Edited July 7, 2017)

Still trying to decide which applications to download or purchase for your Android phone? Here are a few things to consider especially in light of new findings with Android updates, and the risks they may actually hiding in your latest software update.

Pileup Flaws - Privilege Escalation Through Updating

Recent research show these vulnerabilities in Android updates, causing Malware in "Pileup Flaws" to be on the rise. With mobile security threats showing up everywhere lately, even Android users are at risk. Many of us typically don't think twice when it comes to running updates on our mobile devices. Although, in light of newly discovered information on Pileup Flaws, it may be smarter to look a bit further into what these updates hold. A Pileup Flaw is a threat found in newer Android updates or the PMS (Package Management System).  As you update your phone privileges are shared unknowingly without actually allowing access to your device.  After the update is completed, attackers are then able to increase their privileges to your device, giving them full control and access over information stored on your mobile phone... All of this is being done without consent from the actual user.

Why Be Concerned, It's Just Part of the Update Right?

It may seem pretty standard just to update your device as they release a newer version, but recent updates may actually be more harmful to your phone if you fail to add additional security to protect your device beforehand.  Once malware gains access, it's possible the attackers can exploit any of the following depending on the version of Android OS running after the update:

  • Permission to access voicemails, user credentials, call logs, and app notifications.
  • Send SMS or text messages.
  • Start any activity.
  • Replace Google Calendar app with a malicious one - Get user's event notifications.
  • Put JavaScript code in data directory to be used by Android browser - Stealing user's sensitive data.
  • Prevent user from installing critical system apps - even Google Play Services.

All of these being examples of how the user loses complete control over their device and their permissions to remove any harmful files. Your phone becomes a shared with an attacker, leaving you at risk,  or in danger of losing important information.

How Can I Protect My Device?

There are several applications available on the market today to help protect your device from these threat. Although, very few will protect against these new "Pileup Flaws". Android suggest the following, Secure Update Scanner, 360 Mobile Safe, and 360 Security which all fight these threats best. 360 safe has a better customer rating, as well as more options to customize your phone's overall security.





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