LG posts info on January 2017 Android security updates

LG posts info on January 2017 Android security updates

LG posts info on January 2017 Android security updates

While we still have a few more hours until 2016 reaches its end, LG has decided to go ahead and post the patch numbers on Google’s January 2017 security updates for Android. LG’s website also has information on some patches that are specifically for the company’s handsets.

The website says there will be a total of 73 security patches on the Android side in January, with seven of those updates labeled as “critical”. In addition there will be eight more updates that are just for LG’s smartphones like the LG V20. While there’s no specific info for the Google security updates, other than their identification numbers, there are more details on the eight LG patches. One of them is labeled as “critical” and specifically affects devices that use chips from MediaTek. LG says the patch is to get rid of the MTKLogger application which can log “personal information to storage without user consent” and  “can be started by third-party application without user consent.”

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Google to roll out January’s Android security update next week

Google to roll out January’s Android security update next week

Google to roll out January’s Android security update next week

Google may be getting ready to release the latest Android security update next week, but slightly later than usual. Support pages on Verizon Wireless for its Google Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones show that the upcoming patch could go live for those devices on Tuesday, January 3.

The support pages show that the build number for the new security patch will be NMF26U. Normally, these kinds of updates begin to roll out on the first Monday of each month, which in January’s case is on January 2. However, due to the officially observed holiday of New Year’s Day, that may explain why the Verizon support pages show the update is being pushed back to Tuesday, January 3.

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Facebook might release the Events app for Android today (Update: now available!)

Facebook might release the Events app for Android today (Update: now available!)

Facebook might release the Events app for Android today (Update: now available!)

Update: Well, that was fast. Facebook has just released its Events app to the Google Play Store. Head to the link below to give it a shot!

Original post: Around 100 million people use Facebook events on a daily basis. That’s why the company decided to launch a standalone Events app back in October. Initially available for iOS devices, the app is now making its way over to Android. According to TechCrunch, Facebook will release the Android version of its Events app today.

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Sony’s Xperia X Nougat Concept updated with security patches and more

Sony’s Xperia X Nougat Concept updated with security patches and more

Sony’s Xperia X Nougat Concept updated with security patches and more

Owners of Sony’s Xperia X smartphone in Europe who are also signed up for the “Concept for Android” program can download the first update for the software since it first rolled out a couple of weeks ago for Android 7.0 Nougat. The program offers Xperia X owner a chance to get some hands-on preview time with upcoming features before they are made available for all owners of the smartphone.

In this case, the build number for this update is build number 38.1.A.0.342 (NBD91K4). It includes the latest November Android security updates from Google, along with adding X-Reality support in the Album app, and also includes new versions of Sony’s Xperia Home and Xperia Transfer apps. As you might expect, there are also some bug fixes in this Nougat-based release, including a new version of the fingerprint driver and bug fixes for the camera and FM Radio features.

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How to integrate Smart Lock into your Android apps

How to integrate Smart Lock into your Android apps

How to integrate Smart Lock into your Android apps

Smart Lock, full name Smart Lock for Passwords, is a Google API, announced at I/O 2015. A very simple description of it is an API that enables users signup and login to Android apps, without needing to enter a username/password combination! Yes, you read that right. With Smart Lock, app developers can design their applications to store (and sync across devices) usernames and passwords and/or federated login tokens. Our very own Edgar Cervantes has an excellent article on syncing passwords using Smart Lock.

One of the most exciting features of Smart Lock is that users are not limited to using Google accounts. Smart Lock supports username/password, Google, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Microsoft and even bespoke account types.

Related: The best Smart Locks

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Android Pay no longer works with latest root methods

Android Pay no longer works with latest root methods

Android Pay no longer works with latest root methods

One of the major drawbacks of rooting your phone these days is losing access to certain apps. Ones that work with secure data, such as your bank details, often won’t run on rooted devices, although that hasn’t stopped the development community from finding ways around this. However, it seems that Google is now wise to the latest trick and will be updating its server side system to prevent rooters from using app like Android Pay.

Highly regarded developer Chainfire came up with a root method that avoids tampering with the /System memory partition, meaning that the method didn’t trigger SafetyNet detection used by apps including Android Pay. This weekend through, Google appears to have begun rolling out a server side update to counteract this exploit, which is disabling use of SafetyNet protected apps even when using this root method. As this update is being applied to the off-device servers, there’s nothing that root users can do about it. The jig is up, at least for now.

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Root users rejoice – SuperSU now supports Android L

Root users rejoice – SuperSU now supports Android L

Root users rejoice – SuperSU now supports Android L

SuperSU’s popularity stands powerful for a reason. The Chainfire team is amazingly dedicated, making their Superuser manager one of the best options around. An important factor is always timing, and we can be sure developer Chainfire is also not lacking in that department.

SuperSU has been updated to version 2.01, bringing support for the Android L Preview. Most won’t be able to take advantage of it, as Android L has yet to reach its completion. The preview version can now get root support from SuerSU, though. It’s a small update, as it revolves around the premature Android version. We won’t find any other improvements or fixes.

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Smartphone users are unwitting participants to widespread surveillance effort, says security expert

Smartphone users are unwitting participants to widespread surveillance effort, says security expert

Smartphone users are unwitting participants to widespread surveillance effort, says security expert

The ubiquity of mobile devices has prompted government agencies to piggyback on corporate efforts to collect our information all in the name of marketing, says security expert Bruce Schneier.

Depending on which study you reference, smartphone penetration in the US reportedly ranges from 62 percent to 71 percent, according to analytics firms like comScore and NPD. Regardless of the actual figures, one thing is for sure: smartphones, tablets and wearable devices like smartwatches and smart glasses are gaining ground among consumers.

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Beware of fake Instagram app that contains malware

Beware of fake Instagram app that contains malware

Beware of fake Instagram app that contains malware

Instagram has been in the news a lot recently. It launched on Android only a few weeks ago and enjoyed over 1 million downloads on its first day on Google Play. Then Facebook decided to buy the 13 person company for $1 billion! Naturally, the Facebook purchase rocketed the app to even greater popularity with the  acquisition being covered by the mainstream media.

When a cyber criminal sees something popular, especially on a mobile device, it becomes a very tempting target and Instagram has been no different. A Russian group has created a fake Instagram web site which offers downloads of the app directly from the site (rather than from Google Play) and, in doing so, is attempting to infect devices with malware.

Tests carried out by Sophos have concluded that the fake app doesn’t even try very hard to copy the genuine Instagram app but instead tries to connect with some Russian mobile networks in an attempt to create money by sending background test messages to premium numbers.

Creating dummy apps infected with malware is a popular technique used by cyber criminals. Recently a fully working version of the insanely popular Angry Birds Space was found with with a variant of the DroidKungFu malware. DroidKungFu contains its own embedded version of the GingerBreak exploit allowing it to silently root the infected device and install itself without any user interaction.

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