Remote wipe hack not limited to Samsung devices

Sep 26, 2012
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Remote wipe hack not limited to Samsung devices

Yesterday we talked about a huge hack that made its way to some Samsung devices, in which visiting a link that contained a line of malicious code would automatically send your phone into factory wipe mode without it being stopped. However, it looks like this hack isn't just isolated to Samsung devices. It turns out the hack was able to be replicated on HTC, Motorola, and Sony devices as well.

Thankfully, the exploit has been patched on the Galaxy S III, but the bad news is that it's not just limited to Samsung devices. It's been reported that the hack is working on the HTC One X, HTC Desire, Motorola Defy, Sony Xperia Active, and the Sony Xperia Arc S.

So, what's the problem exactly? It turns out the hack goes through the Android dialer, which supports specialized strings of characters that can do things from displaying your phone's IMEI code to factory wiping the device. If a device is vulnerable to the hack, the dialer treats these special characters the same as a regular phone number, which can allow a website to factory wipe a phone without the user's permission.

Luckily, a website has been put together where users can see if their Android device is vulnerable to the hack. As with any new service that can't quite be trusted yet, use it at your own risk! And until your phone manufacturer patches the exploit, it may be a good idea to download and install an alternative dialer just to be safe.

[via The Next Web]


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