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June 19, 2013

BlackBerry issues Vulnerability warning for Z10 phones

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Last week BlackBerry issued a security advisory notice to those who have bought its flagship Z10 touchscreen smartphone. This does not affect the Q10 which is on a slightly different OS given its physical keyboard.

The advisory, which was issued last week, link below, notes a bug that relates to BlackBerry Protect, its security and backup utility, rather than the phone’s operating system itself.

According to the advisory, an escalation of privilege vulnerability exists in the software of some Z10 phones that could allow a malicious app to “take advantage” of weak permissions in the in-built security software. This could allow a hacker to gain access to the device’s password, and intercept and prevent the device from being wiped.

The “critical” factor is that the security flaw could dupe the device’s user into installing an app which resets the device password through BlackBerry Protect. Though the device may be in the user’s hands, the device’s data is under the control of the hacker.

BlackBerry 10 version 10.0.10.261 and earlier devices are affected by the critical bug, except version 10.0.9.2743. BlackBerry 7 and earlier users are not affected, and neither are those who upgraded to BlackBerry 10.1 in recent weeks.

BlackBerry said in the advisory that the bug is “not currently being actively exploited,” but BlackBerry Z10 owners and IT administrators who deploy BlackBerry Z10 smartphones in an enterprise should update their devices as soon as possible.

Enterprise users can also set their BlackBerry Enterprise Server policies to mitigate any unauthorized access.

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Dave Thornton

Senior Editor

Senior Editor
Been involved in technology for many years, more than I care to remember. Live in Dundee, Scotland. I like Android, Windows Phone OS, BlackBerry OS and iOS, and love writing about all things techie. Currently have a Honor 6+, Elephone P6000, Nexus 5, Chrombook C720, HTC One M7, Nokia Lumina 625, Microsoft Lumia 435, Blackberry Q10, HTC Hero and iPad mini