Liliputing: Database of 200+ smartphones that can run Linux (unofficially). “In a nutshell all you have to do is type your phone’s model number into a box at… and if your phone is one of the 200+ models in the database, you’ll see listings for the GNU/Linux distributions that support your device. Have a Nexus 5? It’s supported by all three of the Linux-based operating systems mentioned above. Have a first-gen Pixel or Samsung Galaxy S7? Then your phone can run postmarketOS.”
TechCrunch: Popular Android phones can be tricked into snooping on their owners. “Security researchers have found several popular Android phones can be tricked into snooping on their owners by exploiting a weakness that gives accessories access to the phone’s underlying baseband software. Attackers can use that access to trick vulnerable phones into giving up their unique identifiers, such as their IMEI and IMSI numbers, downgrade a target’s connection in order to intercept phone calls, forward calls to another phone or block all phone calls and internet access altogether.”
The Register: Google’s joins Gang of Four to guard Play Store apps from malware, and maybe not fail so much. “The Chocolate Factory on Wednesday announced the App Defense Alliance, by which partners ESET, Lookout, and Zimperium will be able to scan Android apps submitted to Google Play prior to approval and distribution.”
Google Blog: Google Play Points: a rewards program for all the ways you Play. “Since 2012, Google Play has been your place to find and enjoy apps, games, movies, TV shows, and books. More than 2 billion people in 190 countries use Google Play to discover blockbuster movies, apps that help you be more productive, and books that inspire imagination. To show our appreciation, we created a new rewards program called Google Play Points that lets you earn points and rewards for the ways you already use Google Play. Over the past year, millions of people in Japan and South Korea have joined the program, and starting today, Google Play Points is launching in the United States.” Considering how many problems have been coming out of Google Play lately, I’m uneasy about adding a program that encourages people to get more apps.
Motherboard: Google Hosted an Insecure App for Searching Personal Data of Palestinians. “An Android app on the Google Play Store allowed anyone to look up biographical information on a large number of people in Palestine, including names, dates of birth, place of residence, and details on their family. The app was designed for a user to search for one person at a time, but a cybersecurity researcher also found the server hosting the data itself is insecure, allowing anyone to scrape it en masse.”
Sydney Morning Herald: Consumer watchdog takes legal action against Google for ‘misleading’ conduct. “Announcing the legal action on Tuesday, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said Google had misled Android mobile phone and tablet users about the location data the company was collecting and using.”
SC Magazine: Google Play adware campaign taken down, developer identified. “A year-long investigation by ESET of an adware campaign found 42 apps on Google Play that had been downloaded eight million times, along with the Vietnamese malicious actor behind the scheme.”