Despite a number of obvious flaws, I have always considered Android a fairly secure operating system. The lack of viruses, coupled with my own caution, made this platform — for me at least — quite usable without fear of getting an infection or a spy app to watch what I was doing. Well, the availability of monthly security updates, in fact, turned out to be not so monthly, made the situation even better. Nevertheless, a number of experts believe that with Android not everything is as good as it is commonly thought.
Android recognized as the most insecure OS of 2019
Experts of TheBestVPN project conducted an independent study and calculated that the total number of vulnerabilities in Android discovered over the entire history of the OS is over 2,500. This is a colossal figure, surpassed only by Debian Linux, stopping at around 3000 vulnerabilities. But since it would be too one-sided to take into account the gaps that have been fixed for a long time, TheBestVPN experts also took into account all the vulnerabilities over the past year and found that according to this indicator Android is the unconditional anti-leader. Neither Linux nor Windows nor macOS can compete with it.
This graph shows how many vulnerabilities in Android have been identified over its entire existence and over the last year.
However, although Google admitted that TheBestVPN was right regarding the total number of vulnerabilities, it said that it is completely inappropriate to take into account all the platform's flaws that have ever been encountered in it. In any case, it is a mistake to consider the gaps that were fixed several years ago as an indicator of the current level of protection of the OS. The fact is that any product develops over time and Android in this case is no exception, since it receives security updates on an ongoing basis that fix all existing bugs and vulnerabilities, the company stressed.
It is clear that Google is trying to defend the reputation of its product, but personally, in this case, I adhere to its side for several reasons.
Top Issues Android
- First, the search giant does timely fix vulnerabilities Android by regularly releasing security patches at the beginning of each month. Yes, not all manufacturers adapt them for their devices, but this does not negate the fact that Google cares about its OS and develops it.
- Secondly, many vulnerabilities arise from fragmentation, and Google has already talked about this. Manufacturers release their own shells based on Android, implement their own security mechanisms that conflict with the system ones and provoke the appearance of gaps.
- Thirdly, some of the vulnerabilities are not software, but hardware. They are associated with the disadvantages of the processors on the basis of which Android – devices work. An excellent example of this is processors MediaTek, which hide a number of unrecoverable vulnerabilities. This means that no matter how the manufacturer tries to eliminate them, it will not work with the help of firmware updates.
Android is a great example of how the platform hurts itself. If Google had set stricter requirements for hardware manufacturers, limited the ability to create third-party skins, or at least prescribed some guidelines so that alternative solutions did not conflict with the standard operating system tools, the situation could change for the better in the shortest possible time. It is strange that Google did not do this, because this is the most responsible approach that would protect Android from hacker attacks and, which is also important, from attacks from all kinds of security experts. I think that's exactly what I would have done Apple.