There is a serious problem in Android-land, reports Dan Goodin: “950 million Android phones can be hijacked by malicious text messages“. In short: almost all but the oldest Android devices are vulnerable to attacks. The errors exist in a system library called Stagefright, developed by Google, that handles media processing.There is no fast patch available, since the update has to come from the company that built or supplied your device.
The vulnerability is in fact a series of several bugs. For 100% protection from attacks you will have to install all relevant firmware updates for your device, as soon as they become available. Samsung, Huawei, LG, HTC, etc. will have to prepare those updates… or so we can hope.
You can limit your exposure a bit, says Ars Technica:
For now, there’s not much end users can do to protect themselves other than to install a patch as soon as one becomes available for their specific Android device. People can also prevent MMS messages from automatically loading in Google Hangouts or other text apps.
To stop those MMS’es from loading automatically in Hangouts, check out this Google forum post: “Change Hangouts text message settings on Android“.
As for me, I hope that Samsung rapidly does what it is supposed to do: patch my phone! Or will that brand-new OnePlus phone be patched sooner ;-?