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May 19, 2011

Android data leak bug patched

by Brian Turner

Google has released an update for Android to prevent handsets and tablets running the OS from leaking data.

The potential vulnerability was found by researchers at the University of Ulm in Germany, who were looking into how Andoid phones deal with web logins.

They were startled to find that logins for web services were held in a token in plain text, which was stored locally on the device logging in for fourteen days.

This could have resulted in unauthorised users, especially listening in on insecure wif-fi networks, copying user logins for web services.

Google has now upgraded Android to try and plug the breach against data attacks.

However, because of the open source nature of Android, it will be hard for users to protect themselves without upgrading to the latest version of Android.

The German researchers have also recommended that Google improve Android security by shortening the length of time secure login tokens are valid for, and force logins to use secure encrypted connections.

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