All the latest UK technology news, reviews and analysis

Linux kernel exploit targeting Android platform discovered

12 Jun 2013
Google Android

Symantec has warned that a recently discovered kernel exploit for the Linux operating system, which allows attackers to gain complete control of infected devices, has been ported to the Android smartphone platform.

The Android malware is capable of bypassing the system's sandboxing capabilities, which are used to prevent programs from performing sensitive systems operations or interfering with other applications installed on the handset, according to Symantec.

Typically, these so-called privilege escalation exploits are used to access data from other applications, prevent users from uninstalling the malware, and make it possible for the attackers to send premium rate text messages from the handset.

“Until a patch is made available for all Android devices affected by this exploit, and to avoid becoming a victim of malicious applications, we recommend that you only use reputable marketplaces for downloading and installing applications,” Symantec researchers wrote on a company blog.

While the exploit was originally conceived for Linux, Android shares much of its source code with the open source operating system, making it easier for attackers to modify the malware for the hugely popular mobile system.

The spiralling volumes of Android malware have blighted the smartphone system's assault on the enterprise, with many IT buyers reluctant to put corporate data at risk. That has persuaded some handset makers, notably Samsung, to develop their own security systems. 

Samsung introduced Knox, a security service, in some models of its Galaxy S4 handsets earlier this year, although the Korean giant got itself in tangles over the UK availability of the service.

  • Comment  
  • Tweet  
  • Google plus  
  • Facebook  
  • LinkedIn  
  • Stumble Upon  
More on Security
What do you think?
blog comments powered by Disqus

BYOD vs CYOD vs BYOC poll

Which approach is your firm taking to managing employees' mobile devices?

Popular Threads

Powered by Disqus
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet powered by Android KitKat 4.4

Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet video

We take a look at the lightweight, waterproof tablet

Updating your subscription status Loading

Get the latest news (daily or weekly) direct to your inbox with V3 newsletters.

newsletter sign-up button

Data protection: the key challenges

Deduplication is a foundational technology for efficient backup and recovery


iPad makes its mark in the enterprise

The iPad can become a supercharged unified communications endpoint, allowing users to enhance their productivity

Software Development Engineer

Develop: Customise: Configure. Maximise your technical...

Project Manager

Hotcourses – Project Manager Salary - £30k to £38k...

Head of IT

A Head of IT is required by a large property services...

Web Developer - HTML5, CSS, PHP, JavaScript, JQuery.

Fantastic opportunity to join a forward-thinking expanding...
To send to more than one email address, simply separate each address with a comma.