Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 25th Sep 2012 21:14 UTC, submitted by bowkota
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless On the same day I bought a brand new iMac and switched back to Mac (no joke!), and teased the employees at the Apple retailer with my Galaxy SII, Samsung goes around and pulls something idiotic like this. TouchWiz, Samsung's Android skin, has a very severe flaw which passes digits along from JavaScript (via their modified browser) to the modified dialler, allowing your device to be factory reset (!) by just visiting a link - via NFC, QR, or plain. This doesn't affect all Samsung devices, but those that are affected are all TouchWiz devices. This just proves once again that you should either buy Nexus, or make the switch to Cyanogenmod (or any of the other AOSP-based ROMs).
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Another, simpler solution
by WereCatf on Tue 25th Sep 2012 21:36 UTC
WereCatf
Member since:
2006-02-15

Just use another browser. I've personally been using Opera for years and I see no reason whatsoever to switch. Especially so since I can't use CyanogenMod.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Another, simpler solution
by Windows Sucks on Tue 25th Sep 2012 21:45 in reply to "Another, simpler solution"
Windows Sucks Member since:
2005-11-10

Just use another browser. I've personally been using Opera for years and I see no reason whatsoever to switch. Especially so since I can't use CyanogenMod.


?

The same goes for QR scans and NFC – Samsung’s TouchWiz UI makes the dialer automatically execute the sequence, which can potentially force a factory reset code onto your unsuspecting phone, and wipe your data.

It's not browser based..

This sucks because regular users have no clue how to use a ROM and almost no one buys nexus phones, Samsung barely markets theirs.

Reply Parent Score: 1

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

This sucks because regular users have no clue how to use a ROM and almost no one buys nexus phones, Samsung barely markets theirs.

Yeah, and we all know just how amazing Samsung is at providing security updates for their Android phones. </sarcasm>

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Another, simpler solution
by darknexus on Tue 25th Sep 2012 21:49 in reply to "Another, simpler solution"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Just use another browser.

In this case, I don't think another browser would help. If I understand the exploit correctly, Samsung's modified dialer is the issue here, not the browser itself. In other words, unless your browser does not do phone number detection (which will pass phone numbers to the dialer when clicked) then you can be hit by this no matter which browser you are using. There's no safety for this one if you're using one of these, except plain old common sense. The old rule still holds: If you suspect a malicious link, don't click it.

Reply Parent Score: 1

phoudoin Member since:
2006-06-09

The old rule still holds: If you suspect a malicious link, don't click it.


Not safe enough : an URL can be resolved automatically without user interaction, like an HTML frame src URL, or a QRCode reader.
Or a RSS app: RSS Republic & co does it and, ironically, many android users actually notice the exploit news article and experience what it can do actually at the same times, thanks to their news feed app ;-).

Reply Parent Score: 2