A study by analyst firm Coverity has revealed that the Android kernel, which is essentially the backbone of Google’s operating system, is riddled with security flaws.
The researchers have found a whopping 359 software defects while examining the open-source Android kernel, version 2.6.32, on an HTC Droid Incredible, of which roughly a quarter were deemed ‘high-risk’.
Some 88 of the defects are considered to leave Android devices open to attacks, said the firm, which confirmed that other Android devices could also be at risk. The findings are bound to cast doubts over Android's ability to replace rival BlackBerry as the preferred choice for corporate users.
The study was carried out as part of the annual Coverity Open Source Integrity Report, which investigates more than 61 million lines of code from 291 major open source projects, including Linux, Apache and PHP.
Coverity has already informed Google and HTC of the flaws. Andy Chou, the firm’s co-founder, said: “We want them to fix the problems. We are trying to follow the model for responsible disclosure."
Neither Google nor HTC has verified if they are aware of the problems, but we can safely assume that if they do exist then an over-the-update fixing them would be imminent.