Google Patches Android for 78 Vulnerabilities in October Update
While Google pushes forward with new Pixel hardware, existing devices get another large patch haul.Google has released its October 2016 Android Security bulletin, providing patches for 78 identified vulnerabilities, seven of which are rated as critical. Once again, the fixes include commonly patched elements, including Qualcomm components and flaws that have already been patched in the upstream Linux kernel. The leading culprit of critical severity flaws in the October update is Qualcomm, with three issues (CVE-2016-3926, CVE-2016-3927 and CVE-2016-3929). Overall, there are 30 patched Qualcomm flaws in the October Android update. In addition to the three critical flaws, Qualcomm has 21 vulnerabilities rated as high and six rated as moderate severity. The Qualcomm vulnerabilities include privilege escalation and information disclosure related issues. Qualcomm has been a leading source of vulnerabilities in Android this year. In Google's July Android update, three critical and 36 high severity flaws in various Qualcomm components were patched. Qualcomm was also the root cause behind the QuadRooter flaws disclosed by security firm Check Point in August. Google has since patched the QuadRooter flaws, which could have enabled attackers to compromise vulnerable Android devices, in both August and in September. Among the other critical flaws patched in the October update is yet another set of issues that were previously patched in the upstream Linux kernel that Android is based upon. CVE-2016-0758 is a critical remote code execution vulnerability in the Linux kernel's ASN.1 decoder that was patched in the Linux kernel community in May. The CVE-2016-7117 vulnerability is a critical remote code execution vulnerability in the Linux kernel networking subsystem that was patched in the upstream community in March.
"A remote code execution vulnerability in the kernel networking subsystem could enable a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code within the context of the kernel," Google warns in its CVE-2016-7117 advisory.