Mobile security company Kryptowire published a blog post detailing a security breach it identified in Android 9, 10, 11, and 12 on Samsung smartphones earlier this year. The issue it found had serious consequences should a device be affected, and the company contacted Samsung. To its credit, Samsung reacted quickly to the problem and pushed its February 2022 security update out to remedy the issue.
Kryptowire’s post detailing the problem is highly technical, but it serves as a good reminder of how important continued security updates are on Android devices. While most Samsung device owners have likely already protected themselves by downloading the security update, those without auto-updates turned on should make sure to bring their device up to date as soon as possible. On your Samsung phone, go to Settings>Software Update, and select Download and Install to check for any outstanding software updates. Then go back and turn Auto Download over Wi-Fi on.
While any security problem or malware issue is bad, Kryptowire’s blog post highlights just how much damage can be done to unprotected phones. According to the post, devices were vulnerable to plenty of meddling by outside actors, giving them the ability to factory reset devices, install new apps, uninstall apps, make phone calls including privileged phone numbers like 9-1-1, and expose the device to even more malicious activity. As stated above, Samsung has fixed the flaw with its most recent updates, but those who haven’t updated their devices could be exposed to the laundry list of malicious activity.
Kryptowire also tested individual phones for security flaws and found plenty in devices such as the Galaxy S21 Ultra, the A10e, and the S10+. The company made a point to say that its goals weren’t to create a fully comprehensive list of vulnerable Samsung devices, but to simply showcase that many phones are “verified to be vulnerable.”
Although it might it may be in the hot seat with Kryptowire’s latest report, Samsung is by no means the only tech company to grapple with security issues. Apple, Google, and just about every other phone manufacturer have all had their fair share of security vulnerabilities. Luckily, most major companies push frequent security updates that protect device owners and their data while the companies that don’t tend to not stick around for very long.
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