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Think before Buying A Pixel Phone Or A Samsung Phone

(Image Credit Google)
Photo Credit: PhoneArena Google’s internal security team, Project Zero, warns about smartphones using Exynos modems are at a high risk of serious security flaws that might allow remote users to quickly compromise a phone at the baseband level. This flaw is particularly among those that are vulnerable namely, Samsung Galaxy S22 and the recently announced Pixel 7, the Pixel 6 are some of the few among them. This issue is a major setback, however, it is not the end as the issue is fixable, and then again, the question is, when is the update coming to all devices that are affected? Below is a detailed explanation of the issues affecting the phone and how to keep yourself safe from hackers. Google responds to Heartbleed bug by creating Project Zero - UPI.com Photo Credit: UPI.com Are Pixel And Samsung Phones at risk? The vulnerabilities are in the Samsung semiconductor-produced Exynos modems according to Project Zero reports. Testing by Project Zero revealed that the victim's phone number was all that was needed for the attacker to compromise the vulnerable devices. Project Zero, taking into consideration how serious the problem is, states that “skilled attackers would be able to quickly create an operational exploit to compromise affected devices silently and remotely.” If the flaw is not fixed immediately, it could be hazardous as there is a lot of sensitive information stored on the smartphones. There were 18 flaws traced by Project Zero in Exynos modem and only 4 out of them are severely flawed and the rest are not that dangerous “not as severe, as they require either a malicious mobile network operator or an attacker with local access to the device.” Which are the phone models are affected? There are more than 20 models at risk that have been listed by Project Zero. Users of the following devices may be vulnerable to one of the 18 vulnerabilities, according to their findings:
  • Vivo's smartphones, include the S16, S15, S6, X70, X60, and X30 series
  • Pixel 6, Pixel 6a, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 7, and Pixel 7 Pro
  • S22, M33, M13, M12, A71, A53, A33, A21s, A13, A12, and A04 series
  • And vehicles using Exynos Auto T5123 chipset are also at risk
Samsung Exynos Modems Facing Vulnerabilities - Gizchina.com Photo Credit: Gizchina.com People owning Galaxy phones should know that the list does not include the Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S23 models because they employ Qualcomm modems. Since the S22 devices used by the rest of the world also use Qualcomm modems, the affected S22 models should only be those found in a few European and African nations. How to stay safe from the vulnerabilities? Even though it is a testing period for devices using Exynos modem, the users can stay safe with their phones by following this step. If you feel a device is at risk, turn on auto updates and the phone will receive security patches as soon as they become available. Google has already begun focusing on finding a solution, and it claims that its March security update should take care of any hardware-related problems. Samsung in response to these security concerns made the following statement: “Samsung takes the safety of our customers very seriously. After determining 6 vulnerabilities may potentially impact select Galaxy devices, of which none were ‘severe’, Samsung released security patches for 5 of these in March. Another security patch will be released in April to address the remaining vulnerability.” “As always, we recommend that all users keep their devices updated with the latest software to ensure the highest level of protection possible.” Google Pixel 7a will have Samsung Exynos Modem - SamNews 24 Photo Credit: SamNews24 Project Zero gives some advice to people waiting for the updates to reduce the frequency of the risks. Turning off Voice over LTE and WiFi calling which reduces the audio call’s quality but not doing this can cause serious repercussions. There is not much to do apart from altering these two settings until the company provides some solid solutions.

By Prelo Con

Following my passion by reviewing latest tech. Just love it.


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