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Backdoor exploit discovered in Samsung Galaxy

A zero-day has been discovered that allows attacks to remotely exploit a software-based backdoor contained in a minimum of nine various types of Samsung smartphones and tablets.  This exploit allows the attacker to steal documents and location information or activate a microphone and camera.

The news came to light Wednesday by individuals of the Replicant project, which develops free variants of Android to replace the static versions pre-installed by most carriers and suppliers.

Replicant developers stated they discovered that the radio modems on several Samsung devices will carry out remote file system (RFS) commands. “We discovered that the proprietary program running on the applications processor in charge of handling the communication protocol with the modem actually implements a back door that lets the modem perform remote file I/O operations on the file system,” said Replicant developer Paul Kocialkowski in a article posted on Free software Foundation.

“This program is shipped with the Samsung Galaxy devices and makes it possible for the modem to read, write, and delete files on the phone’s storage,”, “On several phone models, this program runs with sufficient rights to access and modify the user’s personal data.” he added.

Samsung didn’t immediately reply to an emailed request for comment about Replicant’s findings or even to question about which models may be affected and whether or not they planned to patch vulnerable devices.

According to Replicant’s research discovered nine various kinds of Samsung devices which contain the vulnerability: the Nexus S, Galaxy S, Galaxy S 2, Galaxy Note, Galaxy Nexus, Galaxy Tab 2 7.0, Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy S 3, and Galaxy Note 2.  Other devices are unknown at this time, they speculate there could be many more. affected.

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