As is the (new-ish) tradition, Google rolls out security updates on the first Monday of each month. The factory images for March's updates are right on schedule with all of the recent fixes to shore up potential vulnerabilities in the operating system. LMY49H is the build number for the Nexus 10 update, which will remain cut off at Lollipop. Most of the other devices on the list are moving up to MMB29V, though a few other build numbers are available for special variants. Read More
It looks like there may still be a couple of missing images, like the Nexus 6P. Just keep checking back and they'll probably turn up shortly.
Samsung followed Google's lead last year to promise regular security patches for its most popular phones. It's been following through with the updates, and today it's time for the February patches. If you've got a flagship Samsung device from the last few years, you can expect an OTA notification soon. Read More
Two bills recently passed in the states of New York and California that aim to weaken smartphone security in order to combat crime. The laws would prevent the sale of smartphones with full-disk encryption that could not be unlocked by the manufacturer (at the request of law enforcement). In response, Rep. Ted Lieu of California, a Democrat, and Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas, a Republican, have proposed a bill, the Ensuring National Constitutional Rights for Your Private Telecommunications (ENCRYPT) Act of 2016, that would block state-level attempts to ban encryption on smartphones sold in the US.
The bipartisan bill addresses multiple issues. Read More
Tomorrow is apparently "Safer Internet Day," which you most likely didn't mark on your calendar. Google remembered Safer Internet Day, though. To celebrate, it has brought back the free data reward for completing a security audit of your account. A few minutes of your time gets you an extra 2GB of Drive storage for free. Read More
Google is keeping up with its promise to roll out monthly patches for Nexus devices, and it's really on the ball this time. The factory images for the February update are already available for download from the Google developer site. There are also some updated binaries for devices that need them. Read More
Some of you may think of Cerberus as a three-headed dog that guards the gates of Hell. Others may think of a service that can track down your phone and lock it as necessary. One of the two has decided to embrace material design. Read More
Samsung was among the companies that last year pledged to start issuing monthly security updates for its flagship phones following the Stage Fright scare. It has more or less been following through with that promise, and today it's announcing a January security patch with fixes for Android vulnerabilities from Google's monthly patch, as well as some specific to Samsung devices. Read More
Some of the most interesting additions to Android often come from unofficial sources. Maligned though they may be, Google has incorporated many features previously only found in manufacturer skins into AOSP, and custom ROM developers add new features more or less as they feel like it, some of which are quite useful. For example, the CyanogenMod development team is working on a new integrated system for handling "locked" apps, applications that can't be accessed by the user without a password or other validation mechanism. Read More
A zero-day vulnerability in the Linux kernel was disclosed a few days ago, and that usually spells bad news for anything based on Linux. That includes Android, of course. When Perception Point announced the exploit (CVE-2016-0728), it claimed 66% of Android devices were affected. Google's Adrian Ludwig says the real number is much, much smaller. Read More