The announcement comes in the wake of dozens of reports that legit but idle smartphone apps are secretly accessing the microphone or camera to prevent malicious apps from doing that.
Android P is a promise that the user privacy will be protected. Cyber security researchers explained that the new Android will focus on apps’ User IDs, which each app creates when it is installed.
Android P will prompt the camera and microphone to automatically shut down access whenever they sense that the User ID is running in ‘idle’ state. Experts explained that idle apps can be malicious pieces of software that are developed by hackers and posted on the Internet as legitimate apps.
Legit Apps Accessing Phones’ Microphones, Cameras Behind Users’ Back
Last year, there was a monster scandal about a similar spyware, called SonicSpy, which took photos and covertly recorded audio for blackmail purposes. Android said that the new protections are set in place for the sake of user privacy.
More details about Android P will be revealed at Google’s I/O developer conference in a few months from now on. According to Bloomberg, the new OS for Android devices will be compatible with displays similar to those from Apple’s iPhone X.
Google is confident that Apple’s ‘notched’ displays are trendy even though some Android developers have ridiculed them. The displays will be supported by the incoming mobile OS.
Experts underlined that apps that secretly access smartphones’ hardware are no longer the product of security researchers’ vivid imagination. They are very real. The New York Times found last year that over 250 apps for Android are tracking users via the devices’ microphones and cameras for ad purposes.
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