Security features in Android 4.3 Jelly Bean


Security and privacy are the main concerns among the Smartphone and tablet users. Google is trying to provide security features to the Android users. Google’s newest version Jelly Bean 4.3 has several good features to solve the security issues. Google introduced important security features with the Jellybean release.

Motorola has introduced “Skip” NFC tags to provide security on phones. However, Google trying to make the security process even simpler by introducing location awareness features. The new feature available in Android allows to find out its current location and change the security settings appropriately.


Android 4.3 consist of SELinux, a mandatory access control system in Linux to enhance the UID based app Sandbox. SELinux is designed to identify the gaps within the Android’s security technology and it regulates the damage which caused by malicious or flawed apps. This process can be strengthening the Android’s existing user identification number based sandbox and it assures the partition between the apps. This makes the application more secure.


SetUid bit is an important flag can be set to any executable binary in a UNIX or Linux based operating system to gain access to the root level. If a binary or application has the SetUid flag then it can work with Admin privilege and do whatever it wants in the system. Normally, hackers will use a program to trace an application with SetUId and then access the in and out of the operating system. These activities can be malicious in nature.  Now with the Android 4.3 operating system, no Android application can access the SetUid functionality even if the app is coded to do so this is expected to reduce the malicious attacks on Android devices.

KeyChains and Keystore Providers:

New version of Android allows the developers to combine encryption keys with hardware. This means, that the private keys cannot be shared with any other device. Google included new functionality with the KeyChain system, which allows applications to build new exclusive keys and that keys cannot be used by some other apps. It will be used only by that app itself. The benefit of this feature is that even if the android device is hacked, the data cannot be downloaded from the device using this new KeyChain system.

WPA2 Enterprise networks:

Now Android 4.3 lets the developers to build applications that organize the Wi-Fi credentials required for joining to access points that uses Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) and Phase 2 authentication techniques. Previously, these connections and configuring process were done by third party applications. Now Google allows Android 4.3 to configure and connect to secured networks.

The above discussed security enhancements are only suitable to Android 4.3. Besides Google introduces two security features that are suitable for all the Android devices, which are using Android 2.3 and above.

The two features are Verify app and Android device manager. Verify app feature scans the applications, which are being installed on the device. The scanner checks every app which are directly installed from the Google play store or from the third party app markets.

Android device manager app helps to find out the device, to delete the sensitive data remotely when the device is stolen or lost. Moreover, it helps to increase the ringing volume ever if the mobile device is in silent or in vibrate mode.

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