Mobile threats are trending upward, with vulnerability exploits gaining traction. The silver lining? More of these vulnerabilities are also disclosed, analyzed and detected. This helps better mitigate Android devices from zero-days and malware, enabling OEMs/vendors to more proactively respond to these threats. This is echoed by our continuous initiatives on Android vulnerability research: from June to August 2016, for instance, we’ve discovered and disclosed 13 vulnerabilities to Google. Their real-world impact ranges from battery drainage and unauthorized capture of photos, videos, and audio recordings, to system data leakage and remote control. This is on top of 16 other security flaws we’ve uncovered that were cited in Android/Google’s security bulletins from January to September this year.
The 13 vulnerabilities were not rated as critical, but they provide more attack vectors for the bad guys. A root exploit can be developed by chaining some of them, for instance. A malicious app can target a vulnerability in the camera server to compromise its driver to ultimately gain root privilege to the device.