The researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology at Atlanta have discovered an Android vulnerability. It can affect devices even with the latest Android OS. The new Cloak and Dagger Android vulnerability come with a malicious app which takes control of the device entirely. It will control the UI and also the feedback. The worst part is, users will not even have a chance to notice the malicious activity on their devices.
How do Cloak and Dagger operate?
The Cloak and Dagger will disable and abuse the SYSTEM_ALERT_Window and the BIND_ACCESSIBILITY functions. If you download this app from play store, you will not be notified about the permissions. The app also does not need any permission to take over the device successfully.
This is not a standard/traditional bug. It is a combination of the two legal license in modern applications. If the app attacks your Android device, it extracts all the passwords and contacts. The risk of downloading the Android vulnerability is more from the third party apps that you download externally.
The accessibility app will be able to unlock the phone and interact with any other applications while the phone screen remains off. The point is, the Cloak and Dagger Android vulnerability can perform series of malicious operations with the screen turned off completely.
Even Google Play Store Apps are not safe
It is a clear example of how corrupted and fake the third party applications can be. Most of the times we feel safe when we download applications from the official play store. But in recent times we are seeing even the Play Store apps are not safe for the Android users. According to Google, they have updated the Google Play Protect.
It is the security services for all the Android devices with Google Play for detecting and also preventing the installation of such apps. They have also taken up new security steps and measures for the development of Android O which will further strengthen the protection and safety features.
But the problem is, researchers, say the vulnerability is not fixed. The attack can affect all the recent Android versions. The attacks include keystroke recording, stealthy phishing, installation of the God-mode app, and silent unlocking of phones keeping screen turned off.
One way to deal with this vulnerability is denying permissions. You can do that by turning off the draw on top permission. Go to the setting, open the Apps menu and tap on the Gear Symbol, open the special access and then uncheck the draw over other apps.