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

Cool Tech

Crucial Ballistix Elite 32GB Kit (4 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 UDIMM

Learn more >

Gadgets & Things

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Plox Star Wars Death Star Levitating Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

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.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?