AirDroid app fixes severe authentication vulnerability

The flaw affected AirDroid versions 3.0.4 and earlier

AirDroid, a popular management tool for Android devices, has fixed a severe authentication software flaw in its Web interface that could give a hacker complete control over a mobile phone.

The problem was fixed in an update released last month, wrote Matt Bryant, a consultant with the security company Bishop Fox, who discovered the flaw. Versions 3.0.4 and earlier of the tool are affected.

AirDroid lets people manage their phone from a Windows or Mac tablet or through a Web interface. To do that, it asks for a lot of permissions, such as the ability to send text messages, turn on a camera and have access to the phone, among many others.

Bishop Fox found it could take over a device running AirDroid by sending a person a malicious link over SMS, Bryant wrote.

The vulnerable versions of AirDroid use JavaScript Object Notation with padding, or JSONP, to request data from a server in a different domain, Bryant wrote. Web browsers usually prohibit this as a security precaution known as the same-origin policy.

"Due to JSONP being an insecure method of sharing data across origins, it is possible to hijack all of the AirDroid application functionality," Bryant wrote. "By doing this, other users' Android devices can be hijacked."

A successful attack means a hacker would have full control over an Android device and can see the phone's contacts, track the device using GPS and transfer photos.

Bryant wrote Bishop Fox tested AirDroid's patch "and have found it more than adequate."

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Bishop FoxsecuritySand StudioExploits / vulnerabilities

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?