January 2021 security patch details now available

Source: Alex Dobie / Android Central

Google has detailed the latest Android Security Bulletin and released the fixes for Pixel devices.

These are exploits and other security concerns that affect Android as a whole. Issues with the operating system, kernel patches, and driver updates may not affect any particular device, but these need to be fixed in the Android base by the folks maintaining the operating system code. That means Google, and they’ve detailed the things they have improved for this month.

Updated factory images for Pixel devices that are supported are available, and over-the-air updates are rolling out to users. If you don’t want to wait, you can download and flash the factory image or OTA update file manually, and here are some handy instructions to get you started.

How to manually update your Pixel

The company that made your phone uses these patches to send an update out to you.

These changes have been released to the people making Android phones for at least 30 days, but Google can’t force anyone to deliver them to you. If you’re using a phone from Samsung, LG, or anyone besides Google, you’ll need to wait for them to send an update and shouldn’t try to flash any of the above files. It might have already happened, as OEMs can send out the patch before the deadline Google must adhere to so that the exploits aren’t publicized.

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Of course, Google has safety checks in place to prevent any problems on your phone because of any security exploits. Verify Apps and SafetyNet are at work anytime you add an app to your phone, and seamless updates to Google Play Services will keep them up to date regardless of any hold up from a manufacturer or carrier. Details about Android Enterprise Security can be found here.

Devices with Android 10 and later may also receive security updates as Google Play system updates thanks to Project Mainline.

Highlights of the January 2021 security bulletin

  • As usual, the Android Framework, Media Framework, and runtime libraries have had high-severity issues addressed.
  • Media Framework components were updated through Project Mainline this month.
  • Qualcomm and MediaTek have addressed hardware-specific issues with their own chips.

Full details for the January 2021 security bulletin are available at the Android Security website.

See the Android Security website for details on all bulletins

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