By Yeha Youm, University of Michigan
Google has announced that they will be fixing a security flaw that affects almost all of its Android smartphones (97%). This fix will prevent hackers from being able to access contacts, calendars, and photos on an Android phone connected to an open Wi-fi network.
The problem is found on Google’s servers, not the Android itself. Therefore, customers will not need to physically bring their phones into their phone providers.
The newest versions of the Android are not affected by this problem, however Android software that synchronizes photos to Picasa Web Albums are vulnerable.
The fix will include a login system to have more secured protocol, which is a practice that is usually done on the Web. Google admits that the issuing of software updates for Androids does need work and are continuing to find solutions to fix this problem. Google has even made an association between cellular carriers and hardware manufacturers in hopes that future problems similar to this can be prevented.
This issue with the Android phone demonstrates the necessity of companies such as Google to closely examine their technological products in order to maintain their consumer’s privacy. The United States Senate has questioned Google about the amount of information that can be stored in the Android and has called for more heavy regulation in future years. In the end, a question still remains: will people be able to have both privacy and easy access to information? Hopefully, Google will prove that they can.