Security Flaw Found On Samsung Galaxy SIII And Note II

  • Allows bypass of lockscreen
  • Launch apps
  • Seen on Android Jelly Bean

Two weeks ago, Apple patched a security bug found on iOS that allows anyone to bypass the phone’s lock screen with just a few simple steps.

  • Allows bypass of lockscreen
  • Launch apps
  • Seen on Android Jelly Bean

Two weeks ago, Apple patched a security bug found on iOS that allows anyone to bypass the phone’s lock screen with just a few simple steps. And now, it seems that a new trend on lock screen security bugs is emerging when a similar flaw was found on Samsung’s Galaxy Note II and Galaxy S3.

For the Galaxy Note II, the bug is triggered by first going in to the Emergency dialer, then pressing the Home button. After pressing the home button, the phone’s homescreen is briefly displayed allowing anyone to make a phone call, record from the microphone, play music or interact with a server. Calendar events and email can also be seen by the hacker in case they are displayed on the homescreen by a widget.

The bug however, has a number of limitations. For starters, the only apps that can be launched using the hack include the recorder app, the music app and to a certain extent the dialer app, which only works when a direct dial widget is placed on the homescreen.

Meanwhile the bug found on the Galaxy S3 poses more trouble as it gives a hacker almost full access to the device. In contrast to the bug found on the Note II, the one on the Galaxy S3 bypasses the phone’s security altogether.

The exploit is done by first going in to the emergency contacts, pressing the home button and then quickly pressing the power button. After that, given the timing was right, a second press on the power button is all it takes to bypass the lock screen and reach the homescreen; and the hacker can launch any app available in the device.

Currently, the security bug is only seen on devices running Android Jelly Bean. The bigger question now is, when will Samsung fix the issue. Android’s openness makes it quite troublesome for OEMs to push updates since it has to go through different channels before it reaches customers.

Do you own a Samsung Galaxy Note II or Galaxy SIII? Have you seen this security flaw in your devices? Share us your experiences by leaving a comment below. You may also find us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google Plus or subscribe to our site for more tech news and features.

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