So it’s been a few weeks since we told you about that security flaw which happens to affect most devices out there and well… but most of you are still probably waiting on some sort of satisfying fix, right? Well the fine folks at Duo and Northeastern University have teamed up and unleashed a special mod of the patch called ReKey. A product of Duo’s security engineers and Northeastern University’s Systems Security Lab, ReKey allows users to immediately protect their Android device without waiting on security updates from their mobile carrier— all with a simple app. There is one major caveat, however: in order for users to apply the patch, devices must be rooted. So if you happen to own an unrooted device at this time, then you’re outta luck until your update is finally pushed to your device (or if some other crafty individuals come up with an alternative).
The patch is free to all Android 2.0+ users and only comes in at a mere 86K in size, so if you’re on a rooted device and itching to feel a little more secure, then head on down to the Play Store and grab ReKey today.
Play Store download link
SECLISTS.ORG has recently disclosed a potential security flaw on the Samsung Galaxy S III. According to the report, “It is possible to bypass the lock screen on the GSIII allowing an individual full access to the phones features.” We previously reported a similar screen lock bug relating to the Samsung Galaxy Note II.
It appears that when Samsung messes up with security, they go BIG or go home! Similar to the Note II Security flaw, it takes pressing a combination of buttons in the correct sequence to get it to work. Here’s how to do it on the GSIII:
Uh oh— it looks like Samsung’s Galaxy Note II may have security flaw. While operating a G-Note II with Android 4.1.2, Terence Eden, recently discovered that the homescreen can actually be accessed by pressing the “Emergency Call” icon, followed by the ICE button and finally pressing the physical home key for several seconds. Although the homescreen does appear for a short period, it is enough time for any hacker to actually click and open one of the homescreen apps— which is especially bad if one of the homescreen apps performs an action at launch (think of a direct dial widget that can make phone calls for example). All of this can certainly cause major issues for owners that may end up with their devices falling into the wrong hands.
Unfortunately Samsung has yet to comment, but we’ll be sure it will want to patch this
potentially major little snafu as soon as possible.
Ah yes, the Nexus 4 smartphone. It’s no secret that waiting for that elusive device has been nothing short of frustrating and with LG’s rumored decision to take a break from the Nexus 4 production— it appears that Android fans will either need to wait for Google to have more inventory available or try to find some other sort of ummm… “alternatives” to suffice. With that in mind— the wizkid team of G33k3r, Rohan32, et. al came up with one hell of a Nexus 4 alternative for those who just can’t wait— and all you need is an LG Optimus G smartphone to start off with. As you know, the the Nexus 4 loosely based off the Optimus G smartphone (save for some minor differences like a pesky custom UI and all). With that in mind, the savvy folks basically figured out a way to overwrite the AT&T-based Optimus G firmware to that of a stock Nexus 4. What this does is literally changes everything from the bootloader to the actual AOSP software— effectively giving you an unofficial Nexus 4. Of course this special mod means that Optimus G users are willing to attempt this special modification will lose a lot which includes the coveted LTE capabilities and 8GB of the available 16GB storage space as the mod will cap the partition at a mere 8GB only.
Still, those are only minor things to nitpick really. This special modification will certainly be appealing to more than a few of you out there. If you’re up for trying this out or want more deets, hit the source link for more information.
source: XDA Forums
It’s no secret that the Nexus 4 is a device that’s ripe for modifications and all, so a new mod has surfaced that allows for the device to have improved video capabilities. It appears that when you have a Nexus that’s been unlocked and rooted, the video framerate improves from 12Mbps all the way to 20Mbps. All that’s needed is a quick XML change to the following:
One of the biggest gripes that people had with the recently launched Nexus 4 was its lack of 4G LTE capability. However, as some tech geeks discovered a few weeks ago, the Nexus 4 does indeed have a 4G antenna since it is based on LG’s Optimus G (which has 4G capabilities). Recently it was thought that this antenna could only be enabled in Canada on Telus and Roger’s networks, since they are the only networks that are built to use LTE Band 4 (which runs on the 1700MHz and 2100MHz wireless spectrum). Turns out however, that AT&T also has several US markets in which it owns LTE Band 4 spectrum. Those markets include Phoenix, Raleigh, San Juan, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Oklahoma City, Dallas, Chicago, Charlotte, Athens, GA and College Station, TX.
Time to pop the champagne bottles and have a celebration if you’re an owner of the Verizon Galaxy Note II— the bootloader looks to have been officially unlocked. Thanks to the tireless work of a few hard-working individuals, they have cracked what is the hardest part of the Galaxy Note II’s shell– despite Big Red’s strong insistence on keeping its devices “safe and secure”. The way the Galaxy Note II’s bootloader was cracked is quite ingenious too actually– all that was needed to do was to trick the Galaxy Note II into thinking it’s a device that’s 0.7-inches smaller and eventually flashing a PIT file in order to revert back to the Galaxy Note II’s original identity after the phone has been unlocked. The method has only been tested on one device as of this time, but with more time and usage of this method— we should see this unlock exploit work on most, if not all Verizon Galaxy Note II variants.
So we have root and now we have an unlocked bootloader. All we need now is those ROMs to eventually start a’flowin’! Hopefully you Galaxy Note II owners don’t have to wait too much longer for some of that custom ROM goodness.
source: Adam Outen+
Considering our Android smartphones and tablets can handle HD content and allow us to view the content onto a bigger screen via HDMI, you’d think that it would be fairly common for apps to allow for those cool features. However, HBO Go and Cinemax are two apps that can surprisingly handle high-quality content, yet does not allow users to utilize HDMI. While it is a major bummer, it would be wise to remember that there are crafty Android users who can always find a workaround to such and yes friends— a crafty Android user managed to get HDMI working on the HBO Go and Cinemax apps. XDA member HBOTroll1 managed to modify both apps’ .apk files and managed to have the HDMI fully functional. HBOTroll1 was only able to test the customized .apk files out on his DROID 4 smartphone, but it’s expected that it will work on most other phones as well. It appears as though the customized files will possibly work on non-rooted devices as well, but there is no official word or confirmation just yet.
Full details are available once you hit the source thread below.
source: XDA Forums | Dropbox 1, 2
One of the biggest advantages of owning an Android device is having the ability to customize not only the interface, but the system settings itself. Part of that includes flashing a custom kernel, which can bring all sorts of enhancements to a variety of levels. Such settings include specifying voltages, underclock or overclock speeds of the CPU, custom color settings. You get the idea.
XDA Senior member clemsyn has created a modified kernel for the Nexus 7 called the Elite Kernel, which is a modified version of the Motley kernel originally created by XDA Senior Member _motley. Hit the break for the list of tweaks this customized kernel brings.
It’s no secret some Android devices may have a security hole or two, but what about a device’s software application on a desktop computer? Well apparently, Samsung’s Kies desktop software contains a security vulnerability which could allow malicious applications to be installed and may affect devices such as your brand-new Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone. As highlighted in Andre Moulu’s blog post, what looks like an official or legitimate app could be downloaded from the Play Store (Angry Birds Cheats, Japanese Squid Girls, etc.) for use. As a user installs the certain apps, the apps could manipulate and overtake the install_packages permission found inside the Samsung Kies application. Once the action is done, the malicious app or apps could then have an even further effect by installing more applications without the user being fully aware.
The scary thing is how simple the security vulnerability is pronounced. It seems the vulnerability was easy to pull off using little more than a few lines of Java and more specifically— this is a common vulnerability found in many system applications that come pre-installed on users’ devices thanks to custom UIs. Let’s hope Samsung (and all of the other smartphone manufacturers for that matter) will take note of this and take preventative measures to protect their devices… and quickly.
If you’re ready to see the vulnerability in action, be sure to hit the break in order to see the video.