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Google's Taking Out the Big Guns

Yan Matusevich
3

After people started panicking about over 58 malicious applications making there way onto people's phones, Google's first step was to quickly take these evil pieces of software off the Market. Through the apps your phone could get secretly rooted and from there the possibilites for hackers would have been numerous. After keeping silent on the matter since the news first appeared, Google has finally come out with its hard artillery by remotely destroying these apps from users' smartphones.

 

In addition to uninstalling the software from aflicted phones, Google is also taking measures to update the Market to prevent similar violations in the future. Google has come out with a new patch to fix the issue. Unfortunately, the cell phone providers are the ones in charge of making the patch available to users, so it's not going to take the same amount of time across the board. People at Google and other security experts seem to pretty convinced that the crooks didn't manage to gather any valuable information.

This whole malware story opens up a whole new can of worms: can Android remain open-source and be safe for users at the same time? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

 

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Comments

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  • Niels Christiansen Mar 7, 2011 Link

    There are some reasons open source works with e.g. Linux, since open source equals many eyes and minds on an issue.
    The problem with Android would be the telcos dragging their feet.
    Feature- and bug-fixes are ok as long as their precious showelware works with them. That alone could a strength into a weakness.

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  • Christian Brüggemann Mar 7, 2011 Link

    It's important to understand why open-source is much safer than a closed system:

    In an open-source system security-related bugs can be discovered by everyone who understands the code. Thus, even if someone creates an exploit but doesn't share any information about it, neither shares the exploit itself, there is a chance other people in the open-source community will find it.

    This is just not possible in a closed system, where only one company got access to the code itself. Sure, it is possible to disassemble the code, but that's a lot of work.

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  • Yan Matusevich Mar 7, 2011 Link

    I agree with you Niels on the point about the carriers dragging their feet. One of the reasons I like Android is that there's a lot more people keeping tabs on what's going on. I think the fact that Xda Developers came out with patch against the aware before Google did is a good example of that. I'm not one of the people out there freaking out about Android security issues, but I'm hoping that the Android community can.react quickly enough.

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