Most of the bugs you’ll find on your gadget are ones which can only be exploited by a highly-informed hacker or an expert of this domain. Not every time, though, you need to be a hacker to get into someone’s phone.
A new bug in Android’s lock-screen passwords can allow even a non-hacker to intrude your privacy. A combination of hundreds of characters is all that’s needed for the OS to crash in the hands of the exploiter. The bug was discovered by researchers at University of Texas.
From the lock-screen, you enter the emergency dial window and from there you bombard the phone with these commands. The researcher John Gordon also uploaded a video of the bug’s proof on a Google Nexus 4.
It affects Android phones running on unpatched versions of Lollipop between version 5.0.0 and 5.1.1, or before build LMY48M. That means more than 20 percent of all Android devices are affected by it. Google has already released a fix on the version 5.1.1 of the OS on its Nexus devices.
It may or may not affect other Lollipop users, too. Protecting yourself is easy enough. Just don’t use a password to lock your phones. Thankfully, Android comes with other methods including PINs and patterns too, so you aren’t short of options.
Or you can once again try not to give your phone to any strangers, ever, which is certainly an even easier way.