Android’s Internal System Broadcast Sentive Data

Android users’ sensitive data, including device details, compromised again. Android apps that access the details without the user’s knowledge are a part of the scheme.

WiFi details that comprise of the network name, the network BSSID, the local IP address, device’s MAC address and the DNS server information, to name a few are all included in the data that was exposed and which can be a great way to track users online and to locate the user in real time.

THE CAUSE

An internal feature of the Android OS that goes by the name of “Intents” is the main reason behind all the leakage of data. A message is dispersed all over the internal system that gets read by all the application and OS functions on an Android device.


According to sources, the broadcasting of the information about the WiFi connection and the WiFi networks, is done through two distinct intents. WiFiManager’s NETWORK STATE CHANGED ACTION and WiFiP2PManager’s WiFi P2P THIS DEVICE CHANGED ACTION.

 The Android applications that are installed, set up posts for the two ‘intents’ and the WiFi information is seized regardless of the permission.


The android permission system is totally hampered by the leakage of this overly sensitive personal data as the user’s permission, for the completion of any action, has no role to play.


SkyHook and WiGLE are two of the BSSID identifiers that could be used to wrest the WiFi details using the infamous ‘indents’. In fact, a malicious attempt could be made to fetch the user’s live location. The application doesn’t ask for the WiFi access permission and yet the data is harvested with subsequent ease.


Apparently, all the older Android versions are affected by this and Google has made a statement where it said that the WiFi broadcast leak would be fixed in the next Android version, which is, “Android Pie (9.0)”

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