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Bug in Viber Communication App Bypasses Android Phone Lockscreen (Video) (Updated 4/27 – Glitch Fixed)

Sections: Communications, Mobile, Smartphones, Web 2.0 / Social Networking, Web Apps

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Screen Shot 2013-04-25 at 12.31.30 PMOverall, Viber is a pretty useful app. In my limited experience, I’ve used it to chat and trade photos with friends across the country via Wi-Fi. Basically, it allows users to make traditional phone calls, send text messages and share photos and their location with anyone worldwide; quite similar to Skype but minus video chatting.

Posted yesterday by Bkav Internet Security’s YouTube account, BkavCorp, a security vulnerability in the app shows how the app is not quite so valuable — in fact, the glitch in the system is downright threatening for your Android mobile device.

When someone receives a message while their lock screen is in place, Viber allows a pop-up alert to appear. Nothing weird there but as you can see in the video below, the message gets right passed the security lock screen. This will allow access to the entire rest of the phone: e-mails, contacts and other applications, as well as personal files and saved data. And in the wrong hands, well, we’re all aware of what can result from that type of private access.

Viber is available for every mobile OS and has been downloaded over 100 million times across iOS, Android, BlackBerry OS, WP8, Nokia and Bada. However, the issue was only discovered on Android, on a Samsung Galaxy S II to be exact. Though the company has discovered the same results on Sony and HTC devices as well.

The company has apparently spoken up about the exploit and is working on fixing it.

 

Post updated on Saturday, April 27 by Matthew Marchesano:

A company representative commented on this article, explaining how Viber assessed the issue and fixed the vulnerability promptly after this story reached the general public. They have released a “fixed version” of the Viber app sans this security glitch, available for download here.

Also, Viber is making sure that problems such as these will not reoccur in the future. If there are any comments, questions or concerns, the company can be reached via e-mail at socialmedia@viber.com.

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3 Comments

  1. Hi,
    I am an official representative from Viber Media.

    We care a lot about our users’ security. We worked around the clock to fix this security glitch and already a few days ago we released a fixed version for this problem. It is available for download at: http://download.viber.com/viber.apk

    We will make sure that such glitches do not reoccur.

    For any other questions/concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

    the Viber Team.

    Viber
    • Hello,

      Thank you for commenting and filling us in on how Viber has amended this issue. I will update this article and include the link to download the system update.

      On behalf of our readers who are Viber users and myself, the timely response and correction of such vulnerability is much appreciated. Likewise we wish for the Viber app to remain free of similar or additional threats in the future.

      We hope to hear from you again.

      Be well,
      Matt Marchesano

      Matthew Marchesano
      • Hi Matt,

        We highly appreciate your prompt response as well, and are very glad to hear that you’ll update your readers about our fixed version :)

        We feel like it’s our duty to protect our users from such threat, and that is indeed why acted so quickly.

        Best regards,
        Viber.

        Viber